Message From the Executive Director
We are more than halfway through 2016 and what an eventful year it continues to be in our world, our city and Project H.O.O.D.
Our organization started in 2012 and we are proud that our programs are growing to serve the people of Woodlawn, Englewood and the city of Chicago. While the violence in our streets dominates the news, there are things we can do about it. My mantra, “Jobs Stop Bullets,” is something I sincerely believe will turn these tragedies and profound grief around.
At Project H.O.O.D., we fashion our programming to address poverty and violence in meaningful ways. One of these ways is by having a free summer day camp for at-risk youth of low-income parents who may have otherwise been unsupervised during the summer months. Lack of supervision often place innocent children in harm’s way.
The staff of our summer program is primarily made up of neighborhood teens employed as counselors and adult volunteers. These teens could have been unemployed while out of school for the summer. Michelle Hubbard, our Camp Director, has been with Project H.O.O.D. since its inception and made sure everything ran smoothly and was fun for the children.
Having a great summer program for over 150 community children has become a staple of Project H.O.O.D. and it would not be possible without our two biggest summer program sponsors, Metro Ford and Ozinga, and over 100 individual donors. We thank all of you for joining in this cause and helping us with our work.
Something else you’ll be hearing more about in the coming weeks is the Project H.O.O.D. Leadership and Economic Opportunity Center. Reinvestment in our community is key for economic survival and recovery and the Leadership and Economic Opportunity Center will be a place for individuals and companies to hone their skills for success.
The Center will be housed in a space donated by Walgreens at 6330 S. King Drive and we are developing programming to cater to entrepreneurs at various stages of business ownership. The Leadership and Economic Opportunity Center will not just be a business incubator, it will also be a place where people can get instruction and mentorship.
Project H.O.O.D. is partnered with the Illinois Chapter of the Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC-IL) and we just had our first Construction Class graduation. Six young people from the community received Carpentry Level One and C.O.R.E. certifications and are now qualified to work for any construction firm. Several contractors are setting up interviews with these graduates and we congratulate them and wish them much success.
Project H.O.O.D. has also been blessed to engage many diverse audiences about the violence in Chicago and what we are doing about it. It is important to engage people outside of the Woodlawn area and the city because oft times people are led to believe that there is nothing positive going on in these areas. Engaging these audiences is an opportunity for Project H.O.O.D. to demonstrate that there are some solution based organizations confronting the issues of everyday violence and poverty.
We invite you to partner with Project H.O.O.D. to help us turn the tide on the violence and poverty in our community. Your donation, no matter the size, is vital to the people we serve and we thank you for seeing the value in what we do.
Please visit our website to learn more and if you’re in the neighborhood, stop by the Project H.O.O.D. Leadership and Economic Opportunity Center anytime during the week.
With sincere thanks,
Pastor Corey B. Brooks