Businesses and Children First
The idea for Children First actually came from two business owners who were members of the Rotary Club of St. Louis Park. These men felt more needed to done for youth in the community.
They pushed and prodded Dr. Carl Holmstrom, who was then superintendent of schools, to lead an effort to figure out how to make life better for all children and teens.
The result was the launching of a community-wide initiative in 1993 to build developmental assets in all young people in St. Louis Park.
Examples of what the business community has done
- A bank president spends an hour a week in an elementary classroom helping students work on their reading skills, while they read to him.
- A florist donates carnations to youth in a low-income neighborhood to give their mothers on Mother’s Day.
- A grocer works schedules around high school students’ academic and extra curricular activities.
- A hotel provided etiquette training for high school students then treated them to lunch.
- A senior citizen high rise makes its bus available for youth outings. Seniors have “adopted” kids from a local neighborhood and provide activities for them.
- A businessman treated six boys to lunch and an afternoon at the driving range.