LEADERSHIP MONTGOMERY - Legacy Class - "connecting"
LEGACY CLASS XXXII PROJECT TEAM THREE
"PACK FULL OF HOPE", THE BACK PACK PROGRAM
CHAIRPERSON: Susanne Trest
TEAM MEMBERS: Sheila Austin, Dennis Barnes, Jon Briggs, Cathy Duncan, Brantley Leverette, Leo Lewis, Susanne Trest, and Billy Whigham
THEMATIC AREA: Poverty/Homeless Children
DATE(S) OF IMPLEMENTATION: October 2015-April 2016
DURATION OF THE PROJECT: 7 Months
PROJECT LOCATION: Carver Elementary School, 3100 Mobile Drive, Montgomery, Alabama
FINAL PROJECT DESCRIPTION:
Our Mission: To obtain local support and funding that establishes and sustains a back pack program that will feed qualified children in local schools every week.
* To solidify the Carver Elementary Program
* To work with Jackie Chappell, a volunteer and Mother of a Student at Carver, to learn about the program that was already in place (After realizing the struggles facing this program in this particular school, we developed other goals.)
* To fund the Program short term (for this year) and long term (for the next 20 years)
Our project committee made the decision to fund the program for the 2015-2016 school year. All eight (8) committee members donated approximately $200 each. We discovered that this Back Pack Program was in other schools, being supported by other organizations, including mainly churches. We then developed a list of churches around Carver Elementary School, which consisted of approximately sixty (60) churches. We narrowed that list down and decided that The City of St. Jude would be the best fit. Long term, we approached The City of St Jude and asked them to adopt the program, both physically and financially. Since fitting well into their mission, they gladly accepted.
* To create a Leadership Council; to help guide the program; to identify growth opportunities to expand current programs; to spread the program to the many other elementary schools that have the need for the program; and possibly to help pass along best practices. This group has agreed to try and meet quarterly going forward.
* To sustain the entire Back Pack Program
* To work with the City of St Jude to provide Back Packs to approximately 50 qualified homeless children each week during the school year (and possibly more during the summers)
MEDIA OUTLETS CONTACTED:
Daryl Forbes, WAKA
WHO WAS SERVED AND HOW MANY PEOPLE BENEFITED?
Approximately 50 qualified homeless students of Carver Elementary School
OTHER AGENCIES AND GROUPS WHO WERE INVOLVED:
* Douglas Watson, Executive Director for The City of St. Jude, adopted the program and will support it for years to come.
* Jacqueline Chappell, a Carver volunteer and parent, had been managing the program with very little financial and physical support.
* Walnie Covington, Principal of Carver Elementary School, committed to allowing The City of St. Jude to adopt and support the program.
* Arica Smith, a Leadership Montgomery alumnae, helped introduce the project team to the program.
* Mona Davis, MPS Public Information and Marketing Manager, and Jolene Kearns, Montgomery Area Food Bank, were important in the two round table meetings we coordinated to help formalize a team community effort. Eleven churches/community organizations that support other Back Pack programs attended these meetings.
* Ramer Methodist Church helped implement this program at Anointed Warrior Hill Baptist.
* Bill Cunningham of the Cunningham Group helped design a marketing piece for the program.
* Tommy Nichols, Kwik Kopy Shop, printed the new marketing materials.
* The Central Alabama Community Foundation met with team members to discuss potential financial support.
* The Montgomery Education Foundation advised the team on fundraising and possible methods of running the money through its organization instead of through Leadership Montgomery.
* Wynlakes Golf and Country Club provided space for ALL Project Committee Meetings AND Round Table Meetings that sometimes included lunch.
* JB Enterprises, a graphic artist, helped the team with a Project 3 logo.
VISION FOR THE FUTURE OF THE PROJECT:
The City of St. Jude shows great promise in assisting the homeless children enrolled in Carver Elementary in future years. They have the facilities, funding and volunteers to sustain this program. Other schools are in need of this program as well. Leadership Montgomery may need to consider going into other schools to obtain support.
WILL THIS BE AN ONGOING PROJECT OR WILL IT BE A ONE-TIME PROJECT?
For Carver Elementary, this is a one-time project for class XXXII, but with the assistance of St. Jude, the project may be on-going.
IF IT WILL BE ON-GOING, WHO WILL CARRY THE PROJECT FORWARD? The city of Saint Jude
DESCRIBE EXACTLY HOW YOUR PROJECT WAS IMPLEMENTED:
The Back Pack Program was already established at Carver Elementary School by an earlier Leadership Montgomery class and was continued with the assistance of a Leadership Montgomery alumnae and Mrs. Jackie Chappell. However, for the 2015 school year, we felt our job was to sustain funding and volunteers (aka-an organization) to support it.
During the year following Leadership Montgomery’s initial adoption of the program, Carver began to struggle to maintain it. It became a one-woman show, with Mrs. Chappell taking the lead; but when she became ill, the program ended. In April, The City of St. Jude adopted it, and the Project Three Committee breathed sighs of relief. We thank God for these children and The City of St. Jude.
HOW MANY VOLUNTEER HOURS WERE DEVOTED TO THIS PROJECT?
Collectively Project Team #3 worked 275 hours on this project.