As Claire, Kisky and the First Story team ramp up work for our annual fundraising event, right alongside us you’ll find a crew of bright, motivated young people who know how to roll up their sleeves and get to work.

They’re youth from The Office Group, and for years they’ve shown up for First Story—just like The Office Group is showing up for them.

“We’re working with diamonds in the rough,” said Corben Hyatt, executive director of The Office Group and head football coach at Summit High School. “These are the kids out there in Bend flying under the radar. We help identify them and give them the extra support they need to go to college. Giving back through volunteering is just one piece of the puzzle.”

The Office Group—which is an independent non-profit—networks with counselors, teachers and coaches all across the district to find youth who are committed to their education but do not have the financial resources to easily access college.

Once connected with these outstanding youth, The Office Group provides tutoring, academic support, and college counseling. While they don’t provide scholarships directly, The Office Group will identify scholarships and support their students to apply and earn those critical dollars.

“Most of the kids have done the legwork but don’t know how to do those next steps,” he said. “And most of our families really want this for their kids but don’t know that it’s feasible. We work to put these kids on that greater path for themselves and their families.”

Working with First Story is just a natural fit. Both organizations are partnering with community members who are working hard to stretch toward a bright future—and just need a little extra support to get there.

First Story has provided grants to The Office Group over the years to ensure the success of this incredible program, and a few years back a family with a teen in The Office Group was even provided a home through First Story. The relationship has grown into a strong community bond.

“Whatever Claire says they need, we provide,” said Corben. “It’s amazing what they do.”

The feeling is mutual, Corben! And thanks to all the youth in The Office Group for all your hard work to help us put on our annual charity bash!