JUNE 28, 2017 5:50 PM
Save Our Sons teaches young men the basics to succeed in business world
The power to inspire others to excel is in each of us. As Mother Teresa famously said, “Never worry about numbers. Help one person at a time and always start with the person nearest you.”
At the seventh annual Save Our Sons Youth Summit, young men spent a day acquiring skills in how to excel and better themselves through workshops, activities, an inspirational speaker, and communication with male mentors and role models.
They learned how to tie a necktie while talking about their interests at a workshop called “The Ties that Bond Us.” Every young man also received the gift of a tie.
At “The Game of Life” activity, they discovered how chess and the basic techniques of the game can be applied to everyday life. They studied robotics and rockets at a workshop that emphasized the importance of Science Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) skills and its influence on 21st century careers.
The event was hosted by Alonzo Mourning’s Overtown Youth Center and was held June 3 at Jose De Diego Middle School in Miami. During the daylong mentoring initiative, representatives from AT&T surprised attendees by presenting OYC with a check for $25,000 to support its ongoing programming.
Keynote speaker Shawn T. Blanchard began the day by sharing his story and his journey to becoming an acclaimed author, entrepreneur, motivational speaker and mentoring specialist.
He told of the challenges he encountered during his formative years from “being born a crack baby to selling drugs at the age of 11 and losing those he loved the most before adulthood.”
Blanchard talks about his life to groups across the country. He seeks to motivate youth to “help them to see their challenges as opportunities to propel them to something greater.”
He presented everyone with a copy of his book, “How ‘Bout That For A Crack Baby: Keys to Mentorship and Success” and awarded nine students and one mentor with a tailored suit from his private suit line. He also contributed a $500 scholarship to a graduating senior.
The Summit welcomed community leaders including Kevin Vericker, Service Officer from the office of Miami Mayor Tomas Regalado; Lyle Grandison, president of Respect for Life Educational Services; and Stephen Marino, Overtown Youth Center’s board chairman.
“The SOS Initiative was designed to address issues that impact the positive trajectory of the lives of young men growing up in urban areas,” Marino said in a release. “Save Our Sons is one of my favorite events because not only is it designed to empower young boys but it provides men an opportunity to inspire and bond with each other.”
Cristal Cole of AT&T Florida-External Affairs said her company “believes it is critical for students to have access to the tools and support systems they need to graduate high school, and succeed in college and they enter the workforce.”
“We are proud to support community programming provided by organizations like the Overtown Youth Center, who help foster a safe environment where children can dream big and access the resources they need to be successful in life.”
To learn more about the SOS Initiative and see photos of the Summit, visit overtownyouth.org/gallery/2017-save-our-sons-youth-summit.