The name encompasses not only the mission, but the scope as well. Kids Matter International works to show children that they are important even if they live in poverty—even if they were abandoned or orphaned—setting their sights as close to home as Northern Texas and as far away as India and Honduras. In Texas, its work is apparent in children heading to school with new clothing and supplies. In India, an orphanage gives children a home through political unrest and natural disaster. And in Honduras, the organization provides transitional housing for young girls who have faced abuse.
Yet the people behind Kids Matter International know that when facing a foe as intractable as childhood poverty, no one can solve the problem alone. That’s why the organization—which comprises just four full-time staff members—teams up with hundreds of volunteers and dozens of corporate partners to put on programs that directly benefit disadvantaged children.
See how Groupon helps you discover local causes and lend a helping hand to projects big and small at the Groupon Grassroots blog.
Imagine the moment when a shy, introverted young girl steps in front of a room full of people for the first time and speaks with confidence and clarity. This is a regular occurrence at Drama Kids International, where experienced teachers use a unique, copyrighted curriculum to help shape and focus outgoing children or draw shy children out of their shells. Classes for kids as young as 5 refine speech techniques, dramatic movement, and imagination, giving them the confidence to perform in front of an audience or finally ask their parents to change their names to Thespis. For older kids, aged 12–18, Drama Kids International offers the DKI Acting Academy, where serious theater kids can expand their speaking, acting, and auditioning skills through exercises and performances.
A lifelong poker player and theorist, founder and head instructor Sean Hansen knows that gambling doesn’t have to be a gamble at all. Big Slick Poker Academy helps students of all skill levels—from absolute novices to experts whose grandfathers were decks of cards—learn the logic and strategy behind one of the world’s favorite card games. The keystone Red Chip introductory course is designed for beginners and experienced players who want to fix holes in their game. Over four weeks, students learn valuable skills such as basic profitable strategy, bet sizing, reading tells, and no-limit theory. BSPA also leads seminars on topics such as starting hands and basic bet sizing, offers individual pre-coaching evaluations for advanced players, and shares bare-bones fundamentals during "The Fish Bowl," a free monthly round table discussion for absolute beginners.
At For Those about to Rock School we offer guitar, bass, drums, piano and vocal lessons, but we don't teach the traditional way. We have our students tell us which songs that they would like to learn and we begin by teaching simplified parts of those songs.
At a time when most kids were learning to spell with the letters in their alphabet soup, Mark and Missy Seyler were learning gymnastics. What began as a fun extracurricular activity turned into a successful college career for both Mark and Missy at the University of Oklahoma, which led the siblings into the teaching profession. Their academy resembles an Olympic training facility with wall-to-wall mats and rows of gymnastics training equipment, such as balance beams and uneven bars. The center's in-ground trampolines, play mountains, and foam pits also help youngsters discover the fun in physical fitness. Mark and Missy lead an extensive gymnastics curriculum in classes for boys and girls, and students can attend the academy as soon as they enter preschool or learn to recite the alphabet backward. In addition to their standard classes, Mark and Missy lead regular events such as camps, Friday Nights Out, and birthday parties. As their skills progress, students can pit themselves against their peers in Southlake’s competitive programs.