Though Lauren and Cory Boldon are only 13 and 14 years old respectively, they believe the old adage, “there by the grace of God go I” must never be forgotten. Their parents spoke this to them many times while growing up, and now it is a part of their lives. Lauren and Cory take pride in helping people who are less fortunate than they are because they believe that is their responsibility.
There is an ever-growing Hispanic population in the inner city of Minneapolis. It is one of the largest in the country. Lauren has been taking Spanish for seven years at school and wanted to use this knowledge to help others. She has a 4.1 GPA and her sister, Cory, has a 3.4 GPA, so they decided to help children who were having difficulty in school, as well as adapting to our English-speaking culture.
Lauren spoke with her mother and decided they could tutor/mentor a Hispanic family in the social system of Hennepin County. They contacted Hennepin County and were connected with the Ready Program leader for mentoring a child. Their idea was a new concept for Hennepin County so they had to receive approval from the Hennepin County Board. Once approval was received, the Ready Program leader matched the Boldons to a family of Hispanic and Native American heritage. They work with the oldest seven children of a sibling group of eight, ages five to thirteen. Lauren and Cory have been working with them for over two years now and are very proud of their progress. The girls have learned to understand differences in culture, education and life experiences and been able to make a difference for this family. As a result of Lauren’s idea and example, many families have also started mentoring “family to family.”
In addition to working with the Ready Program, the Boldons sponsor several children in other countries through Children’s International. They are also counselors at Church Bible School and have collected clothes for Mary’s Place, a homeless shelter. They collected more clothes than all of the other participants at their school combined. Lauren and Cory raised money for Cystic Fibrosis, “Hoops for Hearts,” raked leaves for the elderly, delivered dinners for the elderly and sing at nursing homes. Lauren and Cory also have fed the homeless at The Family Place and have made desserts for the homeless at the Simpson Shelter.
Because of their community service, the Lauren and Cory have become more mature. Their father is Chief of Construction for the Corps of Engineers, and he was asked to be the senior civilian Engineer to help rebuild Iraq. Their dad asked them to take someone else because they had just adopted Cory two and a half years ago, it was not fair to make her relive her fatherless childhood with a drug-addicted birth mother. They were Cory’s 8th family in foster care and her third adoptive placement. When the government said that there was not anyone else to go and they needed their Dad, as a family they decided that he must go and help the Iraqi people. They are very proud of their father’s commitment to our country and to the Iraqi people. He sets a good example of service in his everyday life, and because of that, the Boldons know they will continue their future volunteering.