Community Foundation of St. Joseph County

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Charles Martin "Touch a Life" Scholarship

The "Reach Back for Others" Campaign

Because of Charles E. Martin, Sr., Executive Director of the YMCA Urban Youth Services Program for more than 20 years, literally hundreds of young African-American students from South Bend went on to college. The Charles Martin “Touch a Life” Scholarship was established to create a meaningful, lasting tribute to this remarkable man by helping local, academically motivated African-American students attend college. 

Charles pushed his “kids” to work hard, earn good grades, and finish school. Charles also taught them to serve as role models to younger children so they, too, would pursue an education. Reach back for others, he would say.

The Community Foundation now seeks to expand the Charles Martin “Touch a Life” Scholarship to include a service component, allowing Charles Martin Scholars to work as interns at local charities each summer. The new program will increase tuition assistance and provide valuable work experience and personal income. It will also inspire hundreds of local children in summer programs at the Boys and Girls Club, Kroc Center, and other charities to pursue a college education through the power of positive example.

Help us expand this important scholarship with your gift: Choose “A Scholarship Fund" and enter “Charles Martin Touch a Life Scholarship.”

Charles Martin

The African American Community Fund of the Community Foundation of St. Joseph County extends its sincere thanks to these key sponsors who have already committed their support to this effort:

African American Community Fund


The Cressy Foundation

Crowe Horwath

Bill and Anna Jean Cushwa

Joseph Edwards

Pat and Bob Kill Fund

Laidig, Inc. Scholarship Fund

Memorial Hospital

St. Joseph Regional Medical Center

Teacher's Credit Union

University of Notre Dame

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