What are People Saying who have worked with Amy or one of her Programs?
"Jemz was wonderful experience both for the students involved and myself as a faculty member. I had the pleasure of participating in the group and was amazed with the enthusiasm and genuineness Amy demonstrated each session. I was able to observe our students fully engage in the dynamic materials presented during each class; Amy is gifted in her ability to energize and focus her Jemz girls! I feel this program is beneficial for their social and emotional growth as young women. I watched as each student grew in their confidence and began to carry themselves with a newfound belief in their abilities to make a difference in this world. I would highly recommend this group to those who are interested in encouraging their students to reach beyond their fullest potential and discover their unique, beautiful and empowered voices."
Lauren Grimm, LMSW
"The program is well planned out, it is easy to follow the lesson plans, and the material is adaptable to our school environment. Lara and I found it hard to schedule 60 minute group sessions within the confines of the school day, so we are amending the lessons to fit within a 30 minute time block. The students have had positive feedback as well. For example, one of my sixth graders has struggled with adapting to middle school (which is one reason why I recommended her for the group). After the first session, she told me that it was "fantastic and fun" and was excited for our next session. Her mother also reached out to tell me that Jemz is the first activity that her daughter has been excited about since starting middle school.
I know that Lara and I plan to continue the program throughout this school year with various groups, and other counselors would like to begin using it as well. "
Bay Trail Middle School
Penfield School District
"Rise Above is a captivating, interactive presentation that grabs students' attention. From the opening video clips that stun the audience to the engaging activities that put major points into perspective, students are riveted by the message and how it is delivered. Amy ensures ongoing support by having students sign the the Rise Above Pledge and wear purple bracelets as a reminder to have compassion and honor the pledge. Amy's enthusiasm for the students and her passion for this message help make this experience powerful."
District Social Worker
Greece Central Schools
"The Rise Above assembly at our school was one of the most powerful assemblies we've had here. Teachers and administrators were commenting that it was touching and powerful. It was repeatedly stated that it was the best assembly we've had in a long time--maybe ever. Our student body was riveted by Amy Colombo's presentation and personal story. As the presentation unfolded, the students were brought through a journey starting with some of the basics of bullying issues and then right to the center of the matter: how their actions can impact others--for good or for not so good--perhaps forever and that all it takes is a change of heart. Students were challenged to make a pledge to change their own inaction or to stop their own participation in this senseless behavior. Students were emotionally moved by Amy's words. They were challenged to confront these ongoing issues right in our school. They were given words and ideas to use to make a difference. And they will continue to be challenged by our ongoing relationship with Amy. We highly recommend the Rise Above Rochester assembly."
Jim Traver and Kerry Sabido
Gates Chili Middle School
"We all had such a great time! What a perfect event for Juniors! Great unique approach to team building, they all had a blast. Thank you so much!"
Kimberly C. - Troop Leader
Troop # 60269
"The students interacting and observing the Rise Above presentation were very moved by the topic and presenter. Many students continued their discussions in the days and weeks following the presentation. Students also continue to wear their Rise Above T- shirts.
The presentation touched our student leaders to the point of asking how they could take a more active role in their school environment to help others. I would highly recommend the Rise Above presentation to every middle and high school in order to help bridge a gap and increase the development of self knowledge, anti -bullying strategies and compassion in their adolescent community."
Educator, PBIS Team & Olweus Team Member
Greece Central School District
"Ms. Amy exudes positive energy, a caring heart and always has a smile (and a hug for the girls). The girls love going because it is a relaxed, supportive and insightful atmosphere. The girls learn so many lessons that help them now and in the future."
Paula P. - Jemz Parent
"Miss Amy loves what she does and it shows. The girls love the program and the lessons learned."
Joanne D. - Jemz Parent
"Amazing!!! So proud to have my daughter be part of such a rewarding program. She has become a better kid thanks to Miss Amy!! Thanks for all you do!"
Jill R. - Jemz Parent
"Jam&Jemz has been a safe place for my daughter to be herself as she builds her self-esteem. It's a place that teaches her to build relationships based on mutual respect and genuine care for others. It has encouraged her to be the "Jem" that God has created her to be."
Stacy M. - Jemz Parent
"Annabelle has learned to be tolerant/accepting of all people. She has learned to go out of her way to be caring and helpful."
Dawn M. - Jemz Parent
"I just wanted to say thank you and let you all know how proud I am to be a part of this school. So many schools hide from that fact that teen suicide is one of the leading causes of death for our students. We have experienced a number of anti bully programs none of which really spoke to the overcomer. I lost my son Conor in 2011, when he was 14, to suicide. It is hard for even me to believe that what I have read states that a MAJORITY of teens have thoughts about completing suicide. After seeing the students reaction to the presentation it gave me an impression that they were saying. "Finally, someone is saying what needs to be said". I really believe that if my son Conor had seen this presentation he would still be here.
THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU for allowing this presentation and program into our school."
Gates Chili Middle School
"Rise Above is a great asset to schools and our community. Amy teaches students about compassion through a fun, enthusiastic approach. Her passion for this work is evident and contagious."
Greece Central School District
Certified Olweus Trainer
"To me Jam&Jemz is like a little piece of heaven on earth. It is a place where I can have fun, feel special, and be myself. I love Jam&Jemz. If you were to walk in to the room while we were having class you would automatically feel the love that we all share."
Abby M. - Jemz Student
"Jam&Jemz has been fantastic for Mallory. She is confident to share her ideas and loves to hear the other girls input and stories. She always has a smile before and after."
Nancy G. - Jemz Parent
"Jam&Jemz is amazing. It's one of the only places I could be my real self with their team working games but my favorite part is walking through the doors to see everyone."
Mallory G - Jemz Student
"Regan loves coming to Jam&Jemz. It has been great for her self-esteem and has given her confidence when faced with a difficult situation. Jam&Jemz teaches valuable lessons that will benefit her for her entire life."
Joanna G. - Jemz Parent
"Every little girl needs this unique club in their life! Miss Amy provides the girls with the tools they need to become self confident young women who can change the world around them by their actions.
Debbie F.- Jemz Parent
"I love how what my daughter shares with me has changed how I see my role as a mother."
Sheryl S. - Jemz Parent
"Cetta Lynn is going on her third year. As a parent, I cannot explain how beneficial this class has been for my daughter. I have watched her grow in her confidence and acceptance of herself and others. Cetta Lynn enjoys every class and always comes home with a new look on how we should treat others. We are thankful for Amy and her program."
Tina L.- Jemz Parent
"We like the positive message that Jam&Jemz teaches our daughter. J&J has helped our daughter to continue to develop in a confident way while doing good for others."
Stacie K. - Jemz Parent
"We found each session to be packed with fun activities, girl bonding time, and special Mom and Daughter "team moments". Miss Amy also provides some fantastic yet simple ideas for nurturing our ever changing relationship beyond the club walls. Ella and I tend to leave the workshops talking excitedly the entire way home about the new things we learned about each other, and making plans to attend the next event.
I wholeheartedly recommend these workshops to any parent who values spending a high quality, totally enjoyable experience rediscovering their daughters."
Julie D. - Jemz Parent (re: Mother Daughter Workshops)
Note from Amy Colombo, writer of Jemz Girls Program:
"Teaching Jemz has changed my life. Jemz was purposefully written for my own daughter. It was written with love and from the deepest part of my heart. I have had students come into week one of class with their heads down not making eye contact. By the end of that very class you start to see the spark come alive in them. By week three, they are comfortable, excited to get started and have already made friends, by week eight they are a family and have gone through an emotional, social and beautiful experience together."