The GO Project was founded in 1968 by members of Grace Church and Grace Church School who were struck by a confluence of need and resources in downtown Manhattan: the academic challenges faced by the neighborhood's less-fortunate students and the availability of Grace Church School on Saturdays and during the summer. After initial consultations with the school's board and a $3,000 grant, the GO Project launched its first program with 15 students and two teachers in donated space at Grace Church School.
Over the years, the GO Project has grown organically, adding services, educators and partners to address the needs of students and families in the community. In 2004, GO launched a bold initiative to increase enrollment and services by 20 percent each year, in 2010 the organization received its 501(c)(3), and in 2011, the organization extended its programming continuum to include services for middle school students. The GO Project completed a strategic plan in 2013 with pro-bono support from the Robin Hood Foundation and McKinsey & Company, which revealed a strong desire to scale the GO Project's unique program in the greater community. In response, GO will expand its services in the Lower East Side within three years and will replicate its program in another New York City neighborhood by 2018.
Today, the GO Project is a $2 million dollar organization with five independent host site partners (including Grace Church, Grace Church School, LREI, Friends Seminary, and Avenues-the World School) serving more than 560 public school students in grades K-8 from more than 30 public schools in Lower Manhattan.
The GO Project’s programs include: GO Summer, a rigorous five-week, full day academic and enrichment program led by a team of certified teachers, academic specialists and social workers; GO School, a focused, seven-month Saturday program from October until April, with students participating in a half-day of academic skill-building; GO Families, a year-round social service program designed to empower parents of participants to create positive learning environments at home and at school; GO Fundamentals, an extended tutoring program on Saturday between February and April for students who have been identified as “promotion in doubt” or are facing significant academic challenges; and GO Bridges, which provides comprehensive support to ensure students and families are well informed and prepared for a successful transition into middle school and high school.