Dear Friends and Family,
As many of you know, we are proud to be part of an incredible organization called City of Dreams whose goal is to help youth in extremely low-income neighborhoods through mentorship and experiential learning. Over the past 4 years, you may have heard bits and pieces about Imani, our mentee. Most recently, we are very proud that he earned 4 awards in school (7th grade) and won a scholarship to attend a 7-day Outward Bound trip. He just finished the trip and you can check out some of the photos on this site. This experience makes Meredith and I so happy and sums up what City of Dreams is all about - bringing out the full potential of kids who may not have anyone in their life cheering them on and telling them that anything is possible.
We joined City of Dreams in April 2010 and have been working as 1-on-1 mentors as well as group mentors since then. Every Saturday, City of Dreams takes a large group of the kids on events such as camping, sailing, hiking, skiing, golfing, art, community gardening, and many more. On other days, we get to hang with our 1-on-1 mentee, Imani. It's hard for us to believe that Imani is turning 13 in September. When we first met him, he was a bright eyed enthusiastic 9-year-old with a bit of a shy side. Unfortunately, due to both poverty and dangers in the neighborhood, Imani and many of the other youth have difficulties getting out of their house to do many of the things that I took for granted as a 9 year old. Playing basketball, going to a friends house, or simply a game of tag in the front yard. City of Dreams' Saturday events (aka Super Saturdays) and 1-on-1 mentor events are often the only time they get outdoors. At events, we always layer important lessons into the fun activities and make sure that the activities provide wonderful experiences in places that they may never have thought they could go. We really want to stretch their imagination and let these great kids know that they're entitled to so much more than they may think. Donating to City of Dreams gives Imani and all of these incredible children opportunities to have amazing life experiences at a young and impressionable age. All mentors are volunteers and spend their own money on 1-on-1 events, so all of your tax-deductible charity organization donation goes directly to City of Dreams events with an extremely low overhead. It's an awesome place to donate and make a direct and HUGE difference in these kids lives. Anything helps. I will personally MATCH any donation of $150 or more in order to reach our goal. With your help, anything is possible!
Thanks so much,
Andrew and Meredith