Portsmouth Plus Sustainability

History, Progress, Future Plans
About four years ago there was growing concern regarding the number of youth in our city with poor grades and study skills, a lack of attention to homework, and the potential for dropping out of high school.  To begin to address this problem, we applied for and received a grant from the Nellie Mae Education Foundation to create an after school program that would help our middle school students increase their academic achievement and improve their social and emotional functioning.  Those funds provided the means to form Portsmouth PLUS!, a collaboration between:  The Portsmouth Middle School, New Heights Teen Center, Girl Scouts of Swiftwater Council, and the Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Seacoast. Over the past two and a half years Portsmouth PLUS! has grown into a comprehensive after school program that serves 40% of the Middle School population.

Strategic Considerations
As time passes and our program grows, we face the challenge of sustaining Portsmouth PLUS! for the future. For 2007-2008 and beyond, there will be no funds from Nellie Mae education foundation. In order to make sure the Portsmouth PLUS programs are available to future middle school students we are looking to philanthropically minded buisinesses and individuals to leverage funding.

Without Portsmouth PLUS!, many of the students we care for would not have the opportunity to get their homework completed in a nurturing environment, never mind have the chance to link that learning with hands on activities provided by New Heights Teen Center. A large number of our students go home to chaotic, unstructured places where it is, quite simply, an impossibility to engage in academics. 

Financing Plan
In order to sustain the Portsmouth PLUS! program in the years ahead there is a need to lessen fiscal dependence on grants and in-kind contributions. To avoid the folly of relying on grants that may not be available throughout the years ahead, Portsmouth PLUS! must diversify its funding sources. Ideally, our funding sources will reflect the following configuration:
Financing Breakdown

We are calling upon our local community to help achieve this goal.  In the coming months, our after school ambassadors (A few of our students who regularly attend the Portsmouth PLUS! programs) will be visiting business leaders throughout the city to share with them ways the Portsmouth PLUS! program has affected their growth.