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Small Steps Nurturing Center

Small Steps Nurturing Center's mission is to provide an exemplary early childhood program to instill and foster the social, emotional, physical, intellectual, and spiritual growth of economically at-risk children and their families.

Volunteer Buddy Program: Being a Buddy means having a special one-on-one friendship with a Small Steps student. A volunteer spends 30 minutes each week with his her Small Steps Buddy, engaged in child-directed play that includes games, puzzles, conversation, and other fun activities. Many Buddy relationships last for three years of the student's tenure, although only an eight-month commitment is required.

Weekend Warriors: Volunteers help Small Steps in many significant ways, including participating in on-site work projects on the weekends. Projects could include gardening, playground beautification, van cleaning, and building maintenance.

Parent education events: During the school year, volunteers are needed for childcare at evening parent education events. While parents are meeting, staff and volunteers supervise free play and lead activities for the children. Parents have the security of knowing that their children are having a good time in a safe place, and volunteers enjoy playing with the children. For more information on volunteering with Small Steps, head here.

Monetary donations: Small Steps depends exclusively on private donations from individuals, corporations, churches, community groups, and foundations. Donations can be made by check (sent to 2902 Jensen Drive, Houston, TX, 77026), credit card, or by phone at 713-236-0330. Small Steps also accepts gifts of stock and encourages planned gifts.

In-kind donations: Small Steps is continuously in need of classroom supplies and hygiene items for its students. Examples include: washable markers, crayons, glue sticks, construction paper, paintbrushes, hand sanitizer, toothbrushes, children's underwear, and wipes. Small Steps' full wish list can be found here.

Small Steps currently raises more than 50 percent of its operating expenses from four annual fundraising events: Energy Classic, Nurture & Nourish Luncheon, Clays Classic, and Wine Classic. Also, the Small Steps Young Professionals group hosts the annual Two Step for Small Steps.

Small Steps offers membership to the Young Professionals Group for an annual fee of $50. Small Steps Young Professionals seek to promote the education of children living in inner-city Houston as volunteers, fundraisers, and advocates within their business and personal communities. Members enjoy fun opportunities to network and volunteer with other young professionals in Houston. For more information and or to become a member, head here.