Mary Dollison and Raushanah Shabazz wanted to make a difference in the lives of children who lived in their neighborhood. The Whitely and Industry Neighborhoods (where the students were originally from) was characterized by a relatively high number of low socio-economic home settings. In many of those homes, education was not stressed and care-givers were preoccupied with the daily struggles to make ends meets. As a result, the children in those homes were deficient in basic reading and math skills. They didn’t have any money. They didn’t have a building. But the two women did share a dream to help youth in Muncie’s low income areas succeed in school. The two women began the MOM Tutoring Program. This was in 1987. Today, MOM is assisting children from Muncie and Delaware County, grades one through eight, many who are considered educationally at risk and benefit from this student-centered approach.In 1993, through the generosity of the Urban Enterprise Association, Motivate Our Minds purchased and renovated an old meat market on East Highland Ave. and made this their permanent address. The 2,827 square foot facility hosts after-school tutoring and enrichment activities such as technology based economics, Kiwanis K-Kids, scouting, and one-on-one and small group instruction in reading, mathematics and language arts.
Of the original sixteen students who began the MOM program, fifteen students graduated from high school and the other student completed his General Education Diploma (G.E.D) and most went on to finish college or universities and giving back to their communities. Students frequently phone or stop by the MOM building to give an update on their progress. Parents write letters to share their happiness at their child's academic improvement. Teachers respond frequently that a MOM participant has improved in his or her classroom work.With thousands of students served over the last 24 years, our mission is to continue to provide the youth in the community with the tools to excel educationally, culturally and socially and to inspire a lifelong desire for learning.