On Friday, May 11th, DonCARES of Philadelphia celebrated the end of another successful year of mentoring with our third millennial speaker's series event. Among our panelists were Sam Brown, Deana Young, Travis T. Wolfe. Janae Rockemore, Carine Dorlus, Shawn Aelong, and Khadijah Fofana. The purpose of our discussion was to inspire students at the U School through our stories of perseverance and accomplishment. DonCARES Founder Donovan Forrest was hoping that U School Student and speakers would be open to starting a mentoring relationship.
Each panelist brought something unique to the table. Sam Brown is a graduate of Millersville University and a motivation speaker.
While at Millersville University, Sam served as the President of the Black Student Union. Sam's mantra "Faith and Effort" is what he uses to reach inspire others his dreams. Originally from North Philadelphia, Sam currently resides in Coatesville where he is involved with mentoring youth in the Coatesville Youth Initiative.
Travis T. Wolfe and Shawn Aelong inspired U School students with their testimony. Shawn told those in the room to continue countering the false perceptions made against them as people of color by working hard and continuing their education.
Shawn is a student at Temple's Fox School of Business and a disability rights activist. "I had a teacher, who told me I wasn't going to be anything but someone who could sweep floors. Now, I'm a keynote speaker and a future attorney."
Aelong said. Shawn currently serves on the Police Advisory Board, has been a keynote speaker on various occasions and is studying business at Temple University.
Travis T. Wolfe is the CEO of WolfEmpowerment Group. WolfEmpowerment Group is a group consisting of Travis, his wife, and three children. As a motivational speaker, Travis tells his story of hardship to that of a champion. "I was abused, in foster care, homeless, and at one-point was in a life-threatening predicament. However, luckily, I was given the opportunity to change my life around and I took it." Travis now lives in Los Angeles with his wife, son, and daughters who are heavily involved in film production.
Also in attendance was Carine Dorlus, the Founder of Philly 4 Haiti. Philly 4 Haiti is a non-profit organization whose primary goal is to provide agency and education to build partnerships with other cause driven-organizations, colleges, and universities, in an effort to provide communities in Haiti with essential, educational, economic, and health resources.
Khadijah Fofana, a current student at Temple University and the CEO of Avantika Hijabs was in also in attendance.
When her business was referred to as "The best thing coming from Southwest Philadelphia" by DonCARES of Philadelphia Founder Donovan Forrest, Fofana responded. "Yassssss."
At the end of the program, Deana and Janae Rockemore who refers to herself as an effervescent woman with an ardency for education, the arts, and advocacy for the youth talked with a student at the U School who was finding her passions in life. Deana Mitchell is an educator and gospel singer