Sunday, February 19, 2012
Day 50: Sat On A Roof
Today is the last day of National Random Act of Kindness Week. My theme of this week was to bring awareness to those who are dedicated to spreading good and kindness throughout the world (and in my wife's case, throughout my world). This past Thursday, one of our Twitter followers reached out to me to let me know about someone who is BEYOND dedicated to making our world a better place. Pastor Corey Brooks of the New Beginnings Church on the South Side of Chicago is that someone.
More young people are killed in Chicago than any other American city. Since 2008, over 500 youth have been the victims of homicides. Unfortunately, this is a statistic that has been on the rise as of recent months. Pastor Brooks has seen this trend, and he has had enough of it. He knew typical methods to bring about change weren't enough so he came up with a plan to both shine a broader spotlight on the problems in the neighborhood as well as a way to help bring about change within it.
Since late November 2011, Pastor Brooks has been living in a tent atop an abandoned motel across from the New Beginnings Church. This motel was known as a place that fostered prostitution, drug dealing, and violent crime. After being a part of the successful movement to shut down the motel, Pastor Brooks knew there was more to be done. So he set up his tent on top of the motel with a mission and a goal. His mission, Project H.O.O.D (Helping Others Obtain Destiny), is to live on top of that motel, braving the elements, in order to raise money to purchase it, demolish it, and build a community center on top of it. He is going to be living in his tent until he reaches his goal of raising $450,000 to complete his mission. This community center is going to have mixed income housing, commercial space for businesses to spark the local economy, sports and recreation areas for people to utilize, and a performing arts theater. So for today's random act of kindness, I visited Pastor Brooks on top of the roof, and vowed to bring awareness to his cause. He is within striking distance of accomplishing his goal (only $93,000 away!), and is hoping to get there soon. I know times are tough for many, but if you have the means to even donate a dollar or two, the 366 Random Acts community can have a big impact on helping Pastor Brooks reach his goal.
Although this is the end of Random Acts of Kindness week, we are just starting to hit our stride. These past 50 days have been incredible to say the least, and I can't wait to keep on this journey!