HAPPY SUMMER and welcome to the third edition of our online newsletter (LAP) The Learning Academy Post
Join DonCARES of Philadelphia Mentors, on August 28th from 6:15 to 7:15 pm, as we serve dinner to Philadelphia's more vulnerable populations at Sunday Breakfast Rescue Mission. Click the link below to register.


On Saturday, August 10, 2019, from noon until 2 PM, DonCARES of Philadelphia, Inc. and Strong Men Overcoming Obstacles Through Hard Work (S.M.O.O.T.H) Temple Section collaborated on the second hydration walk for the summer of 2019. 

This year, DonCARES and S.M.O.O.T.H were joined by members of Temple's Black Student Union, Groove Phi Groove, Social Fellowship, Inc. In attendance were also members of DonCARES and S.M.O.O.T.H who are also members of the National Society of Black Engineers, and Alliance for Minority Participation. 
Collectively, all organizations handed out about 150 cool bottles of water to Philadelphia's more vulnerable populations. 

If there's one thing DonCARES of Philadelphia, Inc. Chief Executive Officer Donovan Forrest has learned about leadership, it is how to make people feel good about the work they commit themselves to. It was in late 2018 when Forrest began to raise money for mentor-mentee match outings. The then three year old organization had just recieved free Pizza passes to Blaze Pizza, LLC. when Forrest began to understand the importance of making people feel appreciated, needed, and that their time was valued. 
As a non-profit leader who founded the same organization he works for, Forrest understands the value of time. "We're all college students at DonCARES, so when our mentors attend service events and show up on a consistent basis for their mentees, that requires a deal of sacrifice." Forrest says.
Although each member at DonCARES are volunteers, Forrest gifts his volunteers with tokens of appreciation for their hard work and dedication. Since late 2018, nearly every mentor has received something. From Starbucks Gift Cards, AMC Movie Tickets, to Dinners at The Cheesecake Factory, Forrest believes that self-appreciation is giving value to people and giving them proper recognition. 
This month, Corey Bennett and Carly Newton both won raffles in the DonCARES of Philadelphia, Inc. group chat. Bennett won a $25.00 gift card to Sweet Charlies, a rolled ice-cream and frozen yogurt shop in Center City and Newton won a $30.00 AMC Gift Card. 
As posted on the organization's website under culture & values, the organization proudly boasts the importance of living their values through practice.  DonCARES' success depends upon the ability and commitment of our driven volunteers to share their resources, knowledge, and experiences with the youth we serve while upholding the inspiring vision that empowers us. To do this, our culture is defined by our core values and our mission. ​To define our efforts, we strive to make our organization reflect our community where we bring the best out in each other by service, fellowship, and self-appreciation for one another.
Since February 2019, DonCARES of Philadelphia, Inc. has given away $825 worth of Whole Foods Gift Cards to Philadelphians in Need. 
From February to June, gift cards were given to members of the U School community who were struggling with food insecurity. During the summer months, gift cards are given to members of the North Philly Schools Community who are in need.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture(USDA) defines food insecurity as a lack of consistent access to enough food for an active, healthy life. In addition, one in 5 Philadelphians struggle with food insecurity. Although DonCARES provides gift cards to worthy recipients through their Say No To Hunger Campaign, there are plenty of other resources available to those in need. 

Pre-Service Spotlight: Mariah K. Green

Mariah K. Green is a Senior — Social Work major; Political Science minor 
at Temple University. When asked why she chose to get involved with DonCARES, Mariah says: "I chose to be involved with DonCARES of Philadelphia, Inc. due to the mission and values the organization has upheld since its beginning. In providing high school students with a guiding figure, I felt that it provides a support system that many did not think they had before." In addition to mentoring, Mariah has spent her summer interning at a youth non-profit where she feels that she was able to be more conscious of her role and position within society as a black woman who has faced challenges during my developmental years. In addition, Mariah believes that throughout the summer she has grown to be empathetic and understanding of others struggles and their resilience towards them.