A MESSAGE FROM VIP 5 - PHILADELPHIA:
We, Team I.R.R.U.P.T., the 5th class of Next Level Trainings’ Vision Impact Program (VIP) in Philadelphia, were charged with creating an impactful community service project. Our decision as a team was to stand in support of all men, women, and children facing deep poverty.
More than a quarter of Germantown residents in Philadelphia experience deep poverty. Many of our neighboring friends and families are well below the poverty line living on less than $6,070 a year for a single person and less than $12,550 a year for a family of four. Originating as a soup kitchen in 1985, Face to Face provides a safe environment and practical tools that enable the people of our community to confront personal challenges, empower their lives, and fulfill their unique potential.
With the intention of creating love, freedom, and unity in our community, our team chose to support Face to Face and their mission to embrace, support, and empower as many members of our community who are experiencing poverty as possible. As our team rallied together and the more we learned about this organization, the stronger our vision became. Face to Face’s mission and vision became our own. Our commitment to breaking the cycle of poverty became the source of our inspiration.
With a team of only 31 individuals (27 being students living in other cities across the country), we boldly declared to raise $100,000 in 33 days for Face to Face. We reached out to corporations, local businesses, family, and friends to support this cause. Our campaign reached as far as California, Florida, and even Canada. No matter where any of us live, we continued to push until the very last second of our campaign.
We hosted a block party at Face to Face to bring the community together and raise funds. At the event, we provided cookout style foods combined with music, activities, games, and raffles for members of the Germantown community. We served over 150 community members and neighbors.
With only three and a half hours until the campaign’s deadline, our team met our fundraising goal for a grand total of $103,263. In addition to raising funds for Face to Face, our team spent over 2,000 volunteer hours working on this project, sourced over 4,500 tangible goods, and transformed the community garden into a sight the whole community could be proud of and recognize.
Mary Kay Meeks-Hank, Executive Director at Face to Face, emphasized the true impact of our team’s support: “To say that we are humbled and grateful for what you've done is an understatement. Thank you, thank you, thank you.”
We are over the moon about our results and still in awe of the impact we have made in such a short period of time. It is truly amazing what can happen when a team bands together to achieve a goal that changes the world forever.
From the bottom of our hearts, we want to thank everyone who contributed to our campaign and supported us along the way. Thank you to Next Level Trainings’ Leadership, coaches, and graduates, and the many donors from all walks of our lives. We are truly grateful for the lessons we have learned and the connections we created not only within our team but out in the world.