Grateful Graduates Overcome Challenges With Help of Local Charity

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Late May and early June have always been among my favorite times of year. The sun is shining, the air is warm, and there are several reminders of appreciation and gratitude. Cicero once said that “Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all the others.” In my short life on earth I’ve found that to be abundantly true.

When mid-May hits we celebrate Mother’s Day, which leads quickly into school graduations, and is followed by Father’s Day. For a month plus it’s hard not to smile and think of our many blessings and accomplishments. What donned on me recently was how appropriate it was that our school graduations are bookended by Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. For without a mom and dad acting as nurturing role models, many children may never reach graduation day.

Firebrand Media’s Fearsome Foursome

Recently, my awareness to all of this was heightened at a charity golf event that we at Firebrand Media supported, upon invitation from our partner Ideal Luxury. In addition to the fun and social connections we made, The 23rd Annual Boys Hope Girls Hope of Southern California Golfer’s Classic at Pelican Hill Golf Club was also inspiring. At the dinner event we learned more about the Boys Hope Girls Hope mission to help at-risk children-in-need between the ages of 10 and 18 meet their full potential by providing a stable home, positive parenting, high-quality education, and community support.

We had a chance to meet new graduates from the program, all who had earned high marks in graduating top area high schools such as Rosary, Servite, Mater Dei and others. With the odds once stacked against them even finish high school, these young boys and girls are now moving onto college. They now have hopes, aspirations, and all the confidence needed to become our future leaders. It was awe-inspiring to see them, to hear their stories, and to feel their overwhelming gratitude.

We all have a biological mother and father, but unfortunately not every child has nurturing adult figures in his or her life. The Boys Hope Girls Hope national charity, and its Southern California Chapter, seek to fill that need. The charity intervenes to help children succeed by offering a stable home, college preparation, and round-the-clock support. The boys or girls in the program live in homes, each supported with a counselor, academic advisor and a house manager. These groups become families. They share meals and living space in a stable home with positive parenting, high-quality education, and the support needed to reach their full potential.

Seeing these young high school graduates and their bright futures was a great reminder that communities, supporting one another, are a powerful force. President John F. Kennedy once said: “As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.” In the 2017 Boys Hope Girls Hope graduates we met, who embraced and thrived in the Boys Hope Girls Hope program, that physical manifestation of gratitude through their actions was overwhelmingly clear.

Congratulations to all the 2017 graduates–from pre-school to PhDs–be proud of your accomplishments! In return, know that I’m grateful for you, as your stories of challenge and triumph inspire me.

To learn more about Boys Hope Girls Hope Southern California and how you can get involved visit their website at It truly does “take a village to raise a child”, and below are just a few of the people, families and companies that share their time and resources to help tomorrow’s leaders succeed through this program: A special thank you to this years sponsors: Kirwan Family Foundation, Du Family Foundation, J.W. Mitchell Company – Sandra L. Mitchell, The Youngman Family Foundation, Bascom Group, Deloitte/Doug McCaulley, Howard Building Corporation, Ideal Luxury, Mitch & Shelley Shatzen, Straub Distributing, The Pribus Family, The Webster Family, Toyota Financial Services, Chicago Title, GE/Pete & Diane Lannon, Hugo & Irene Aviles, Interior Office Solutions, Reaction Audio Visual, The Allen Family, The Compean Family, Theresa Morrison, World Wide Technology, Adam & Meredith Beamish, CKE, Mark, Chapin Johnson Foundation, Rutan & Tucker, The Beamish Family, The Muzzy Family, Can Do Services, Ed & Barbara Arienti, Plaza Bank, Robin Yoshimura, Tony DeGrazier/Island’s Restaurants.

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