The RETTEW Charitable Foundation awarded a $5,000 grant to TomTod Ideas for What If 101, a weekly program to support middle school students in developing essential skills to make a positive community impact. This grant will allow more than 300 seventh graders in North Canton City Schools in Ohio to participate in the program.

Using real world topics as its landscape, What If 101 helps students develop meaningful connections with their community, explore how to create and innovate, and practice their lessons through developing, pitching, and enacting their own community-centered ideas. RETTEW shares the values of What If 101, as both of our organizations are focused on community development and outcomes.

The program uses a “webs of support” mentoring approach, a type of connection the RETTEW team will engage in by joining students in the classroom through this grant. RETTEW team members can also be part of interview panels allowing students to better understand their community while exploring future vocational opportunities. RETTEW will also be included in the closing program to provide students with feedback on their final idea pitches.

TomTod Ideas is a nonprofit empowering middle school students to explore and launch innovative ideas and spark positive community change. Through three core programs and community collaborations, they empower middle schoolers with week-long summer camps, project launches, and school-based partnerships. Over the past nine years, TomTod Ideas has worked with dozens of schools and more than 6,000 middle school students across Stark and Summit counties in Northeast Ohio.