And in response, I have shared my own story.
Of How I Became a Giver. https://www.facebook.com/notes/remy-fortier/why-im-launching-impact-club-the-day-i-became-a-giver/10154422734655064/
You can click that link to read my story.
I used to be poor. Luckily I didn’t spend my entire childhood being poor. I had help.
Yesterday, I spent my morning reading the essays of James Logan students who are applying for scholarships with the New Haven Schools Foundation, to go to college.
You know what? Their stories blow mine away.
Yes, I was poor, yes I was exposed to my parent’s drug and alcohol abuse. Yes, they abandoned me on my neighbors front porch as they succumbed to addiction and went to jail.
But in my childhood, I didn’t fully overcome those setbacks. I wasn’t an A student. I didn’t do hundreds of hours of community service. I wasn’t a candidate for scholarships. I ended up dropping out of community college. Mediocre is a good word to describe my academic career.
It wasn’t until I was in my early 20’s that I woke up and started having dreams and goals and began pursuing a better life.
These kids have stories you wouldn’t believe.
Or maybe you know them all too well.
Stories of abuse, physical and sexual.
Deportation, running for their lives.
Immigration, bullying and being made fun of for not speaking the language.
Disabilities and fighting illness.
Drug and alcohol abuse by the parents that are supposed to care for them.
Kids who had to run whole households from a young age.
And yet these kids have already BEAT THE ODDS.
They are honor students, super smart, eloquent, in some cases even genius. Some of them, tell the stories of the people that inspired them to fight for a better future.
There was one common thread in over 52 essays that I read. HELP.
These kids either got help, gave help, or both. These kids, with their good grades and teacher recommendation letters, utilized programs through their schools and their churches. They had tutors and mentors. They volunteered to help other kids succeed in reading and math and science. They volunteer with the elderly. They fundraised for causes close to their hearts.
These kids are my heroes.
When I was in my 20’s I felt guilty. I felt guilty because I was okay. I was safe. I had been rescued from the foster system by the people around me that cared enough to be there for me.
Now, as I’ve written before, I feel I have a debt to repay society. An obligation to DO something to help others, as I was helped.
So that is why I helped co-found ImpactClub Union City. Impact Club is special for a lot of reasons. One reason is that it makes it SO EASY TO GIVE. Just 1 hour, 4 times a year. Just $100 each event. And we make a massive difference.
Words cannot express the amount of PRIDE I feel to know that as a community we have injected over $35,000 to the very same charities that those kids applying for scholarships write about in their essays.
Homeless shelters. Domestic violence organizations. Food banks. Special Needs organizations. Social service organizations. Scholarships. All local.
I’m so damn PROUD.
And I want you to join us. I want you to feel what we feel when we contribute and make a huge difference in our community.
If you are a current member of Impact Club – share! Tell someone what our Impact Club Union City means to you. Invite a friend. Forward this message. Help us grow.
If you are curious what I’m talking about? Join us. Register now. Link in comments below. Come to our next event on April 17th.
You’ve got an hour? I’ll see you there!