A MESSAGE FROM VIP 15 - COLUMBUS:
Visions United, the 15th Vision and Impact Program (VIP) class of Next Level Trainings, developed a large scale community service project as part of our transformational curriculum.
Aiming to create empowerment, unity, and love in our community, our team declared we would raise $165,000 in 27 days for Gracehaven and support them in their mission: to stop the cycle of child sex trafficking by providing services such as survivor care and support, residential housing, prevention education, intervention trainings, and community collaboration. Gracehaven is creating a new life for children who have experienced unimaginable hardship, and our team was honored to work with them during the course of this project.
As we started our CSP, we realized just how pervasive and damaging this issue is not just in the state of Ohio, but across the entire country. Every member of our team took extra time to learn facts about the issue but, more importantly, we heard stories of survivors that fueled our drive to create massive results for Gracehaven and the children they serve. We built a stronger commitment to this cause than we originally imagined.
Our team worked tirelessly to contact friends, family, businesses, and community leaders to support this cause. Our Party with a Purpose was a resounding success with food, games, a silent auction, dancing, and fun for the whole family. This night alone brought in over $7,500 to the fundraiser and had media coverage from multiple outlets to inform the public about our work. Our team had incredible support from the community and received all auction items, food, and event spaces as donations so that every dollar could go directly to Gracehaven .
On Improvements Day, the team took action at the Gracehaven house and did everything we could in one day to bring joy to the girls living there. Tables were repaired, new desks and dressers were brought in, landscaping and a freshly-painted deck brought beauty to the outdoor space, fences were painted, and the clothing boutique was completely reorganized. The time put into these projects was deeply rewarding, and we plan to continue improvements even after our official fundraising period ends.
Every team member went out of their way to source donations and raise awareness about these impacted children in our communities. Our team surpassed the original goal and raised a total of $220,322 for Gracehaven in addition to collecting 2,355 tangible goods and volunteering over 4,588 hours in only 27 days.
Visions United is incredibly grateful for this experience to have worked with Gracehaven and the boys and girls they are supporting. We poured our hearts and souls into this project, sharing laughter and tears along the way and never letting anything get in the way of our commitment.
We are humbled to have worked with Gracehaven for this community service project and be able to show the world that with love, anything is possible.
Thank you to everyone who contributed to our project and supported us through this process; without your support, none of this would have been possible. Our gratitude goes out to all of our coaches, staff, and members of the Next Level community for holding us high and encouraging us to dream big. We have learned countless lessons and created an experience that will truly last a lifetime.