Teams Launched to Date:
2004 – 2005
Little People’s Literature
2005 – 2006
The Buzz Literary Magazine
The new literary magazine at Sky View gives all students the opportunity to have their voice heard and an outlet for sharing valuable information with students, staff, families, and community.
2007 – 2008
This team of 8th grade students is pursuing their dream to design and build an outdoor classroom that will leave a lasting legacy at Leominster’s Sky View Middle School. Attending a school that overlooks an “amazing” scenic view, these students are working to design and carry out an outdoor classroom that they themselves and every student that succeeds them will always appreciate. Once the classroom is complete, the team intends for classes to be held there during warm weather days, and for functions to be held there in the evenings. The team is working very closely with their Ally, Mr. Paul Healy, to incorporate Geometry lessons into team activities. Their community partner, Matt Bernard of LandPro Landscaping Inc., is also playing a vital part in helping to guide their Venture and plans to make a large in-kind donation.
Backyard Group Venture
This team of 6th graders at Sky View Middle School is planning to build an outdoor learning lab for science classes. They believe that in order to properly learn about the environment they should attend class outside and have liberal access to the eco-system that they are studying. The team is working with Dr. Robert Bertin of Holy Cross College’s Department of Biology, as well as representatives from the Nashua River Watershed Association.
2008 – 2009
This venture supports our troops by packing and sending boxes to local soldiers overseas. One of the first soldiers to get a box was one of the daughters of a school board member.
Seeds For Success
Venturers in Seeds for Success hope to harvest pumpkins so that they are able to imitate the city of Keene, NH by having Leominster community members carve and light pumpkins to line the streets of Leominster. They also hope to harvest other vegetables as well so that they can donate them to a local food pantry and their school cafeteria.
Hawks Safety Crew
Hawks Safety Crew came out of one students experience in the Leominster Junior Police Academy. During this time this venturer learned a lot about safety and wanted to bring this idea to his school and to the rest of the Leominster community.
Nature’s Perch Venture
Imitating the Extreme Makeover Field Edition venture team in Winchendon, Natures Perch hopes to re-do their field and put in places to sit, batting cages, and flowers to allow the Sky View community the opportunity to enjoy the field and the baseball and softball games.
2009 – 2010
Because of their undying love for their pet dogs, this Venture hopes to raise pet owner awareness, especially dog ownership. To do this, they will post dog waste receptacles around Leominster parks so that owners are encouraged to pick up after their pets. By doing so, they believe that this will cut down on the spread of illness that comes from pet waste and that it will make their parks cleaner. To raise money they will engage local pet stores in hopes that they will distribute pamphlets and will make dog treats and sell them at local events.
2010 – 2011
Make it Clean. Keep It Green
Make It Clean. Keep It Green. Youth Venture was inspired to clean-up their community after visiting a heavily polluted local park. Their Venture idea is to encourage their school and community to keep the local parks, rivers, and brooks clean, not only for its residents, but for all habitats that are affected by pollution (fish, birds, plants, etc). Ultimately, the Venture plans to hold an annual field trip with their peers at Sky View Middle School, where they will hold a “Make It Clean. Keep It Green Clean-up Day,” picking up trash from heavily polluted areas around their community.
Get F.I.T (Fitness Is Timeless)
This Venture promotes fitness through volleyball and other physical activities. The Venturers encourage young people to be active by introducing fun and interactive sports skills they can do to keep moving. Ultimately, Get F.I.T. hopes that through their program, other young people will have the opportunity to build valuable life skills such as teamwork, leadership, and communication.
Expressions of a New Generation
Venturers from Sky View Middle School plan to put their innovative, artistic talents to work distributing a magazine created by the students, for the students. After an overwhelming response from their peers, Expressions of a New Generation was inspired to offer Sky View students the opportunity to creatively express themselves through writing and art, using a magazine as their vehicle.
2011 – 2012
Turtles in Trouble
Turtles in Trouble Venture Team was launched in March 2012, and works to raise awareness about the potential extinction of local marine turtles, specifically the Kemp’s Ridley and Loggerhead Sea Turtles. Research has shown that, as of 2012, local marine turtles are rated among the top 13 sea creatures to become extinct, placing them under the “Endangered Species Act” (NOAA Fisheries, Office of Protected Resources). Turtles in Trouble Venturers plan to host presentations in schools around North Central Massachusetts and hold fundraisers, donating 50-75% of their proceeds to STRP (Sea Turtle Restoration Project). STRP is an organization that participates in the rescuing of sea turtles. Turtles in Trouble plans to recruit new members as they transition to Leominster High School, and continue their mission to help save sea turtles in the future.
Kitz for Kids
Kitz 4 Kidz was launched in March 2012. Lead Venturer, Isabella Serrano, was inspired to start Kitz 4 Kidz after she recognized that her family and other foster families in her community found it difficult to provide their foster kids with everything they need before they arrived to their homes. Isabella shared that there were times when her family has housed up to five foster kids at once, all of them arriving on the same date. Kitz 4 Kidz will create a “kit” which includes clothes, shampoo and conditioner, a tooth brush, body wash, a hair brush, and towels. These “kits” will then be distributed to foster families in the Leominster community. Kitz 4 Kidz aspires to manufacture 500 kits in the next year, and potentially expand their services year after year, producing more kits and serving more foster families in the Leominster community and other communities in Massachusetts.
Art for Animals
The Arts for Animals Venture launched in March 2012, with the purpose of supporting animal shelters in Leominster, MA, and demonstrating how easy it is to turn recycled items into art. Currently, four million catsand dogs—about one every eight seconds—are put down in U.S. shelters each year (www.humanesociety. org). Arts for Animals Venturers plan to spread awareness of the importance of adopting from a shelter and spaying and neutering pets. The Team will sell wristbands and recycled art, host an annual “Animal Shelter Awareness Event,” and fundraise through a 50/50 Raffle, tie-dye t-shirt event, and other efforts.
Don’t Waste, Donate
This Venture will collect reusable items and donate them to people who are in need. Collected items include electronics, clothes, shoes, toys, school supplies, nonperishable food, water (still packaged), and personal hygiene items (still packaged). Donations will be made to homeless shelters in Leominster, Fitchburg, and Worcester.
United Skaters Foundation
United Skaters Foundation was launched in March 2012 by Naji and Derrick in order to teach their peers about skateboarding safety, start a skateboarding club at their middle school, and construct a new skate park in Leominster, MA. Lead Venturer, Naji Ryan, recognized that youth in his community are opting to skateboard in dangerous areas, such as directly in the streets, on narrow sidewalks, and in parking lots. U.S.F. wants address this issue by spreading awareness of the importance of skateboarding safety and to create a place where youth can safely skateboard. This Venture team plans to form a Skateboarding Club at Sky View Middle School, where they meet 2-4 times a month to learn new, safe, skateboarding skills and be active together. Additionally, this Venture team plans to hold annual fundraisers including a “Create Your Own Skate Board Design Contest”, apply for grant funding from both the Tony Hawk and Rob Dyrdek Foundations, as well as ask for support from their community and local businesses to ultimately construct a skateboarding park that can be easily accessed by youth who live in Leominster and Fitchburg, MA.
2012 – 2013
Birds for Boston
After the horrific bombing at the Boston Marathon, 8th graders at Sky View Middle School knew they couldn’t sit idly by and not help those affected. The team felt inspired after reading stories of children making paper cranes, a symbol of peace in the wake of tragedies, and decided to do the same at their school. The Venture has made mountains of paper cranes to sell to fellow students, parents, and community members. All proceeds from the sales go to the One Fund, a victim relief fund that provides financial assistance directly to the individuals who were most seriously injured and to the families of those who were killed at the marathon.
Colors for a Cause
Thinking about putting highlights in your hair? Want them for a cheaper price? Come stop by a Colors for a Cause fundraiser and receive salon highlights for a cheap price! If you’re not interested in hair products, they have headbands and hair bows for sale! All proceeds from this Venture will benefit The Cancer Foundation. Help them color the world pink!
Kids Against Mean People (K.A.M.P)
K.A.M.P, a Youth Venture based out of Sky View Middle School, is eager to stop bullying. To bring their town together against bullying, these students will be hosting movie nights and walk-a-thons. With the snow-cone and popcorn machine rentals, their events will be successful in helping to raise money for Rachel’s Challenge.
2013 – 2014
The Holiday Spreaders team realized how little their generation knew about Alzheimer’s Disease and decided they should make a difference. Along with raising awareness to this disease within the community, this Venture helps those who are struggling with Alzheimer’s in Leominster by bringing them holiday joy every month through festive visits to assisted living facilities featuring games and gifts.
The Kissing Scars Venture team is a group of dedicated students hoping to end the problem of students in their school resorting to self-harm through cutting. Not only do they raise awareness of the issue to fellow students and adults, but they show their peers that there is another way and that they always have a fellow student they can turn to in times of need.
The Confidence Crew promotes change in the mentality of their fellow peers by helping all students raise their confidence and promote a positive self-image through confidence-boosting activities and special events. The Confidence Crew hosted their signature event, a talent show at the middle school, which provided an opportunity for fellow students to showcase the skills that make them unique, all the while giving them an opportunity to share in the empowering experience of speaking or performing publicly.
The project-based Water.Org Venture Team is changing the way their peers think about drinking water by raising awareness and funds to help those who have no access to clean water. Inspired by Matt Damon’s Water.Org non-profit effort, the students of Water.Org raised almost $500 through marketing campaigns at school to send to those in need!
Saving Evergreen wanted to help out the local community when they saw Leominster’s public Evergreen Cemetery neglected and in disrepair. Wanting to honor those who we’ve lost, they committed to support the city with help cleaning the grounds and repairing headstones.
Sky View Mentors
Sky View Mentors know firsthand that getting through middle school isn’t always easy. This group of students is dedicated to helping their peers through the tough times , knowing there is someone they can turn to for support, while also creating a network of continuing support and resources for themselves.
The Changing Lives founders have firsthand experience of sharing a battle with cancer with a loved one. This knowledge has compelled them to help other youth by creating an in-school support system so their peers have someone to lean on if they need it.
FAST (Fitchburg Animal Shelter Team)
The members of FAST are revved up and ready to help the local Fitchburg Animal Shelter do all it can for the animals by raising money, donations and awareness for these family-less animals!
2014 – 2015
ABC – (Accepting other’s disabilities, Believing in change, Compassion for others)
Seeing all the times that students with special needs were bullied by their peers for their mental and physical disabilities, the students of the Venture Team ABC decided it was time for them to take a stand. By creating this new Venture Team, these students will help start a culture of understanding within their school to let students with disabilities know that they have a friend they can turn to for support. ABC will also be raising funds to buy inspirational gifts to help lift the spirits of these students and to show them that change is possible.
Activism Assembly is changing the way we see debates as we know it. These Sky View Middle School students not only bring the debate club atmosphere to a middle school level, but they also meticulously pick debate topics that are hot button issues in our nation today. In addition to the debates they hold, they have challenged the group to add a second level to their mission – turning their debates into civic action. This team gives students the chance to both be a part of the conversation on the pressing issues of the year and create solutions that the team can implement within their school and community.
After learning about the growing number of homeless families residing within the Leominster community, the members of All Stars decided it was time to step up and make an impact in these people’s lives. Through their Venture work, All Stars plans to run monthly movie nights and dances at their school as a means to purchase gas and grocery gift cards for the homeless. By supporting these homeless families, the All Stars hope the families will have an easier path to find their own home.
Furry Friends mission is to help stray animals find homes. They plan to work with no-kill shelters by volunteering their time to support the animals and raising money to donate items the shelters desperately need. Along with fundraising at their school, they want to educate their community and bring awareness to the problem of homeless animals. They hope to make a world a better place for animals with no voices of their own.
Generations of Buddies
Seeking their own role models to look up to, eighth-graders Mairead and Jordan are creating a buddy system within the city of Leominster to benefit middle and elementary school students. They pair middle and high school students with younger students in an after school mentoring program that provides homework help and a support system that reaches across ages and schools.
Lift Up Foster Hearts
Inspired by the 2014 Fall Kick-Off Speaker Marquis Cabrera and their own personal connections to foster youth, the members of Lift Up Foster Hearts created their Venture Team to support foster youth as they go through personal struggles within the system. By putting together care packages that will contain toys, hygiene materials, and other necessary items that will help foster children not only be healthier, but also feel like someone out there cares for them. Working with Department of Children and Families, and other foster oriented nonprofits, this team will be able to brighten the lives of youth around the state.
Optimistic for the Autistic
Believing that people with Autism should be thought of differently and deserve help and guidance at all stages with this disease, the boys with Optimistic for the Autistic were moved to make a difference for kids inflicted with Autism. Their focus is to help the Lurie Center for Autism at MGH by raising funds to not only help the treatment for this disease but also to help with the research to find a cure. They will be running an annual themed dance with hopes to get Leominster and surrounding towns to attend while also raising awareness around Autism.
Pause for Claws
This group knew they wanted to help with animals but weren’t really sure how. After doing some research and finally contacting Animal Adventure in Bolton, MA, they realized the need to help exotic animal rescue. Their work to support this non-profit and the animals they protect will include raising money for a new roof for the building, as well as buying new cages for the transportation of the animals.
Project Identify the Veterans
The members of Project Identify the Veterans show us that you don’t have to join the military to help do something good for those who have served your country. Motivated by the great work that members of the armed services have done and the staggering number of them who are in need of support when they return home, this Venture Team has decided to help make Leominster as supportive of veterans as possible. They will succeed in their goal by hosting appreciation dinners for the veterans, raising money for local veteran support groups, and helping spread awareness to the statistics of veterans who are struggling.
Inspired by their desire to help shelter animals, the girls of the Project Paw Venture joined together to create a project that supports the needs of the Sterling Animal Shelter. Seeing how little these animals have at the shelter, the team will be running a variety of fundraisers to raise donations of pet food, toys, beds, and blankets to ensure that these animals will feel cared for until they get adopted.
SAFE – (Save Animals From Extinction)
With so many animals on the brink of extinction, the Venture Team SAFE is doing all they can to give a voice to these animals and help them to survive for generations to come. By raising money for the World Wildlife Fund, the members of SAFE hope to not only put their fundraising dollars towards the protection of endangered species, but also help educate the community of Leominster on the dire need to protect these animals before it is too late.
Save Us Girls
Wanting to follow in the footsteps of Michelle Obama and Malala Yousafzi, the girls of Save Us Girls wanted to ensure that all girls their age have the right to education worldwide. After seeing the troubles that the girls of Nigeria go through on a daily basis, the Team decided to both raise funds and create educationally based care packages to send to girls in Nigeria. They want to work towards every girl around the world having the same educational experience as they do at Sky View Middle School.
Smashing Good Cause
Seeing the pain their friend’s brother had been going through with his cancer treatments, the students of Smashing Good Cause took their talents in the realm of video gaming to support their friend and all youth who suffer with terminal illnesses. Through their Venture, they are raising money for Camp Sunshine in Maine which supports youth with terminal illnesses by providing them with support, joy and hope all free of charge. Together the Team uses their video game skills to host video game social fundraisers and competitions to ensure no child with terminal illness is forgotten.
Teens Being Strong
Sky View Middle School students, Jackie and Natalia, used their own personal strife as a source of inspiration to create a Venture that will help students who struggle with depression and suicidal thoughts. They want to help these young people overcome their obstacles and live a happier and healthier life by providing a safe in-school space for teens and donating items to a local institution that helps youth with mental health issues.
2015 – 2016
Fancy For Free
Having seen how many of their fellow peers cannot afford brand new high quality clothes and are often ostracized for it by their classmates, the girls of Fancy for Free decided to take action and help those in need get the wardrobe they desire. These girls are now working to collect clothes on a regular basis, including upcycling any donated clothes that may not be in the best of condition, and have students who are in need come by their closet anonymously to collect the clothes they need.
Helpers for Helpers
Deciding that they wanted to support more than just one cause, the members of Helpers for Helpers created their Venture to help other Venture Teams in their school, and the community as a whole. This Team organizes and recruits volunteers, and acts as volunteers themselves, to provide assistance at community events, such as the Johnny Appleseed Festival, as well as events that are held by other Venture Teams. They have created a Volunteer Board that resides in the school lobby listing upcoming events and ways in which a Venture Team could use help, as well as a sign-up form for interested volunteers.
Project Under the Sea
Motivated by their love of the ocean and of marine life, Team Project Under the Sea started their Venture to help raise money for organizations who support their passion, such as the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute. It is their hope to hold sea-animal-themed fundraisers such as Fish Bowl Frenzy, a fun way to get fellow students involved, learn about the issues their Venture is trying to combat, and to collect money to support their cause. They will also be holding cool marine-related events on Earth Day.
This Venture Team shares a huge love of all animals and wants to ensure that those animals that are struggling to survive have the help they need. They joined together to help raise money for animal shelters by hosting a “Little Fair” fundraiser which includes a petting zoo, and hosting an animal-themed school dance. They also have committed to learning as much as they could about animals and have created a plan to share what they’ve learned with their community.
Supporting for Cancer (SFC)
Each member of this team has had a friend or family member who was affected by cancer in one way or another and knows how tough the struggle can be on both the patients and the families. They decided to take action to make it easier for others who are going through cancer treatments by bringing ‘treats’ and baked goods to cancer patients in hospitals. They also hold fundraisers such as car washes and cancer walks, to help support cancer research organizations get closer to finding a cure.
Hand in Hand
The students in this Venture Team wanted to do something to support children in Foster Care. They learned that when foster kids move from house to house, they often bring their belongings in plastic garbage bags and often do not have the basic supplies needed to succeed in school. They wanted to change this and held a ‘Backpack Drive’ to collect gently used backpacks to distribute to these children while raising funds to stock these backpacks with school supplies and games.
Clipped to Our Hearts
After learning about the Holocaust and how Norwegians wore paper clips as a silent protest and symbol of resistance against Nazi occupation during World War II, these eighth grade girls decided they should find a way to help those still struggling today. Knowing they would be visiting the United States Holocaust Museum on their 8th-grade trip to Washington, DC, the Clipped to Our Hearts Team decided they could still make a difference by raising money to give a donation to the museum. They decided to raise this money by creating and selling paper clip necklaces and charms that each hold the name of someone who died in the Holocaust.
Combining their love of music with their passion of helping those who are sick, three Sky View Middle School students created their Venture Team, Musical Notes, to help lift the spirits of those in the hospital. Each of these students are musically gifted, yet each have been affected by seeing ailing family members and want to be sure that others who are sick and in the hospital can be lifted up by music and special gifts. They will be raising money and support to bring gifts for kids in the hospital, as well as play music and sing for them as a way to brighten their days.
Understanding that not all children are as fortunate as they are in being able to play their favorite sports due to high user fees, this group of girls banded together to start a Venture to raise money to help financially disadvantaged children join local teams. Not only will this help these students learn what it takes to be a part of a team and get some necessary exercise to stay healthy, but it may make the difference between these students doing well in school and getting the support necessary to get into college. They will be hosting sports camps that allow younger children to experience new sports, as well as host sports-themed carnivals.
2016 – 2017
Hope 4 the Holidays
The six girls in Hopes 4 the Holidays wanted to make the holidays better for families in need. They are making care packages to give to families who may not be able to celebrate the holidays because they don’t have the money to make that happen. They raised money at a bake sale and donated $50 grocery store gift cards to several families before Thanksgiving so these families could have a turkey and a true Thanksgiving meal. They are working to make upcoming holidays special for even more families.
H.O.T.C. – Helping Out the Community
These two students couldn’t understand why their apartment complex wasn’t recycling. They care deeply about the environment and how much pollution is caused just from waste. Their Venture is working with their apartment complex and the Leominster Housing Authority to get a recycling program going at their complex as well as others in the city.
Jars of Happiness
This Venture Team’s mission is to spread happiness to those who are ill. They create and sell jars of candy and chocolates to help spread happiness to all. With the funds they raise they will make donations to Boston Children’s Hospital. They will also volunteer there, and create an art contest to send the winning entries to BCH to brighten the rooms of the patients.
This group of students wants to bring smiles to the faces of children in the hospital. They understand how hard it can be for a child to have an extended hospital stay and these Venturers want to brighten their time there with care packages. These packages include games, toys, crafts, and some fun gender-specific items. They are partnering with the Boston Children’s Hospital and the Massachusetts General Hospital to help get these packages to those in need.
Field trips are fun, yet they often have a cost associated with them. The girls from UPBeat have friends and know other families who aren’t able to affordbv field trips so they have decided to raise money to offset some students’ field trip costs. They raise money by bringing awareness to their own love of Anime by holding “Idol Meets”, with costumed characters and opportunities to get pictures and autographs.
This group of 8th grade boys wants to bring gaming to terminally ill children at Camp Sunshine. They want to make sure that children who are sick are still able to have some fun. So they are combining their own love of gaming with their passion of helping others and are holding fundraising events to raise money to purchase gaming equipment to donate to Camp Sunshine.
This team of four girls wanted to make sure that children of military families had enough gifts at Christmas. Understanding that there’s often just one parent income in a military family and that some military families can struggle financially – they created their Venture to be able to raise money to buy gifts for these children. They will work specifically with organizations that support military moms and families.
Stop Child Abuse (SCA)
The SCA team wants to educate on child abuse and raise funds to support organizations that work to help prevent it. The three members of this team feel strongly that no child should be harmed – ever. They host soccer tournaments to raise awareness and to raise money for this very important cause.
Three compassionate girls joined together because of their love for animals, and they created Pawsome. This team is raising money for animal shelters and sanctuaries, including the Worcester Animal Rescue League. Each member of this team has their own inspirational story involving animals and, because of their strong passion toward animals, they knew that they wanted to help in some way. They will ‘share the love’ and make monthly donations to different organizations that are dedicated to the care of animals.
Sports for Smiles
Three girls love playing sports, while at the same time, understand how costly playing a sport can be for families. They wanted to be able to help students who maybe wouldn’t normally be able to afford to play, the opportunity to, by giving them a scholarship so they can pay their playing fees. They are raising money to accomplish this through fundraising efforts at their school and community.
This group of five Youth Venturers all had the unfortunate experiences of spending time in hospitals. During their time in hospital rooms and play rooms they realized how dull and boring it could be and wanted to find a way to make it brighter, happier, and more fun for other children who have to spend any amount of time in a hospital. They’re planning bake sales and other fundraisers to be able to update the rooms with more colors and better toys and things to children occupied and amused.
Spread the Love
These two caring students wanted to do more than help just one cause, so they decided to “spread the love” and they made their ultimate goal to hold monthly fundraisers to help 12 different causes each year. They’ve started small and are fundraising four times this year to help four organizations and they will work up to increasing every couple of years to be able to accomplish their grand goal of monthly fundraising and supporting 12 worthy causes every year.