Spotlight on: Explore & More’s Junior Docent Program

Junior docents 1
This fall, Explore & More launched a Junior Docent pilot program. This innovative community initiative welcomes high school teens ages 14-18 to Explore & More through a series of trainings focused on the importance of volunteerism and multi-cultural sensitivity. Our partnership with International Prep High School of Buffalo has afforded eight high school seniors the opportunity to enhance their leadership skills through volunteering at Explore & More events.

Explore & More highlights cultural diversity through our interactive exhibits, which has now become the foundation of our Junior Docent workshop training series. Our International Prep Docents receive 3-hour, bi-weekly trainings that promote positive cross-cultural relationships, race/ethnicity, disability, religion, nationality, and other social identities. The Docents then exercise their new skills through volunteering at Explore & More community events.

This past December, our Junior Docents lead families from Buffalo’s West Side in our Graham Cracker House Building event at The Niagara Branch Library. In February, Junior Docents made their way out to the museum and spent a full day co-facilitating activities during our Lunar New Year celebration. We very much look forward to the performance presentation they are currently developing for our March Travel the World Around Buffalo Week!

This four-month pilot program focuses on exposing students to the importance of fostering service values, and celebrating the beauty of diversity. Junior Docents who successfully complete our pilot program will receive 25 community service hours toward their high school graduation requirements and a letter of reference for their leadership and dedication to volunteerism.

-April Baskin

April Baskin is an AmeriCorps VISTA Member and the Junior Docent Program Coordinator Explore & More Children’s Museum.

February Means Friendship at Explore & More…and a SWEET Deal!

February is Friendship Month at Explore & More, and that means there’s a SWEET Deal for you and a friend! Bring a friend in and both sign up for memberships between now and February 14, and you’ll both receive $10 off your membership!

Already a member? You’ll be receiving an email with a $10 off coupon to share with a friend.

Sign up today! This SWEET deal expires February 14th!hearts

A MILLION Thanks to Our Friends at Delaware North!

Delaware North Co-CEO, Lou Jacobs, and his wife, Joan, made the $1 million gift announcement with some third grade friends from Waterfront Elementary.

In the season of thankfulness, we are so grateful to have recently announced a $1 million capital gift from Delaware North for the Play It Forward campaign! With this gift, Delaware North will sponsor the Being Good Neighbors educational play zone in the new museum at Canalside. We can’t think of a better neighbor than our friends at Delaware North!

“Being good neighbors, celebrating our diversity, and investing in the future of Buffalo’s children are shared missions of both Explore & More and Delaware North. Like our investment in Say Yes, we are happy to be a part of this project that will have such a profound impact on the lives of children and families here for years to come,” said Lou Jacobs, Co-CEO of Delaware North, the global hospitality and food service company that was founded 100 years ago in Buffalo and is headquartered here today.

The announcement was made at a Culture Day program that Explore & More educators facilitated with third-grade students at Waterfront Elementary/Buffalo Public School #95. Soon to be neighbors with the new Explore & More, Waterfront Elementary continues to be an important and cherished partner of the Museum.

“Like their team is doing today, Explore & More provides experiential learning opportunities that expand on what our students are learning in the classroom, and that are an important part of healthy child development, said David Hills, Principal of Waterfront Elementary/Buffalo Public School #95. “Today they are impacting this one classroom of our students, so you can imagine the impact they will have on the hundreds of thousands and children and families when they are right here on the waterfront, accessible to so many.”

Delaware North’s longstanding commitment to Buffalo is unparalleled, and its commitment to serving children – especially children in need – has never been more evident. Explore & More is thrilled to partner with this most honorable Good Neighbor to bring hands-on early learning experiences to the children of Buffalo, helping to move the needle on school readiness while making an important economic impact.

Delaware North is one of the largest privately-held hospitality and food service companies in the world. Founded in 1915 and owned by the Jacobs family for 100 years, Delaware North has global operations at high-profile places such as sports and entertainment venues, national and state parks, destination resorts and restaurants, airports, and regional casinos. Its 60,000 employee associates are dedicated to creating special experiences one guest at a time in serving more than 500 million guests annually. Delaware North has annual revenue of about $3 billion in the sports, travel hospitality, restaurants and catering, parks, resorts, gaming, and specialty retail industries.