Pillars of Hope

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Become a Pillar of Hope

Complete this application if you'd like to apply to become a Pillar of Hope >>

Who are the Pillars of Hope? 

Pillars of Hope are local African-American and Latinx professionals who volunteer to visit Rochester City School District (RCSD) schools, share their experiences and provide positive support to the students.

We’ve all had important role models that have impacted our lives. We can recall images of famous entertainers or athletes we admired and tried to emulate. But other role models, much closer to home, have impacted our lives through a more personal connection, and through identifying with one another's shared community and experience. 

These role models were teachers, pastors or neighbors in our communities who were professionals in areas like business, engineering, law, mechanical repairs, medicine, and more. They took the time to share pieces of their journey with us, to talk about what helped them along the way. They helped us to see a broader world of possibilities. 

Pillars of Hope reconnect our communities' role models with our community's children by sharing a simple message of hope: “We’ve done it, and so can you.” 

Pillars of Hope Program Goals 

A Pillars Team “adopts” an elementary or middle school and implements activities for the purpose of: 

  • Instilling and increasing the love of learning. 
  • Sharing their personal journeys in pursuit of their own education. 
  • Sharing strategies to overcome challenges. 
  • Imparting knowledge regarding their various career options. 
  • Supporting the school’s teachers and administration. 

Learn more 

To learn more about Pillars of Hope, contact Sophia Billotti in the Mayor's Office of Special Projects and Education Initiatives  at (585) 428-7192 or by email at pillarsofhope@cityofrochester.gov.