Alpine Achievers Initiative was originally developed in the fall of 2012 by a new high school math teacher working in the Mountain Valley School District (MVSD) in Saguache, CO. This teacher recognized that a majority of the students were struggling academically and needed support, which they were not receiving particularly given their limited financial backgrounds, as well as the limited options available for structured and intentional out of school activities.
The teacher began providing these services pro-bono during her after school hours, coordinating with other caring teachers and service providers in the community, receiving seed money through local county government grants, and envisioning a short-term future when these impromptu efforts would become a coordinated, sustainable, grant-funded program designed to benefit all children and families served by MVSD.
The original vision quickly evolved and grew to a more formalized after-school program with academic interventions offered during the school day, as well as increased staffing (e.g., Prevention Specialist, Program Coordinator, and support staff) and a wrap-around support focus to reduce the probability of engagement in high-risk activities. Soon thereafter, AAI was awarded an AmeriCorps grant to expand its services to more schools, and that funding was re-secured for a second year with continued expansion, still operating under the auspices of MVSD.
In February 2016, AAI was awarded nonprofit status. AAI works hard in securing new funding sources in addition to renewing AmeriCorps funding to support its operations and continued growth.