Breaking through a major cultural tradition to receive an education. Overcoming the devastating challenges of a baby born with a life-threatening heart condition. An older adult staving off hearing loss that affected not only her quality of life, but that of her children.
These were the stories of just three of the recipients of JB Brown Fund scholarships/financial assistance that were shared at the JB Brown Fund Event 2013. The inaugural event was held at USA Properties’ Vintage Natomas Field in Sacramento, CA, on Thursday, October 3, 2013. With a crowd of approximately 85 invited guests honoring nine individuals who received college scholarships, while also celebrating the accomplishments of the JB Brown Fund as a whole.
The evening began with Geoff Brown, President of USA Properties Fund, providing his vision for the Fund. He told the crowd how important this fund was to him personally, and to his company, to be able to provide their residents with the opportunity to fulfill their potential, while also providing a means to assist people to overcome substantial challenges.
Sacramento Vice-Mayor, Angelique Ashby, then provided an inspiring vision of the future by sharing her own story of having been a 19-year old single mother, while also working her way through college and law school. She extolled the virtue of the partnership USA Properties and LifeSTEPS have built to help people of moderate means achieve self-sufficiency.
Next on the agenda, Beth Southorn, Executive Director for LifeSTEPS, congratulated the recipients for their courage in asking for help. She honored the donors for their generosity and encouraged everyone in attendance, stating that they were changing the world through their willingness to give, and to receive. Emotions ran high as our scholars began telling their stories.
Scholarship recipient, Alia K., detailed how it is ingrained in her culture that women are not to be educated.
Alia JB Brown Event 2013 from LifeSTEPS on Vimeo.
The second scholarship recipient speaking at the event was Dario B.. For Dario, the turning point in his life came when his son, Noah, was born with a serious heart condition.
Dario JB Brown Event 2013 from LifeSTEPS on Vimeo.
Finally, Eleanor H., a resident of an USA Properties senior community, thanked LifeSTEPS and USA Properties Fund for helping her secure a hearing aid through the JB Brown Fund. “You not only helped me and reenergized my life, but you helped my children, too. They didn’t have to provide financial assistance to help me. Instead, they could continue to pay for my grandchildren’s college education.” Eleanor, the activities director for her community, has resumed her role with renewed vigor.
The JB Brown Fund is a partnership between USA Properties Fund and LifeSTEPS. The purpose of the program is to provide USA Properties residents with college scholarships, sports scholarships for youth, assistance for older adults, and a safety net for individuals and families facing financial crisis. The goal for 2013 was to raise $100,000. To-date, the partnership has raised $115,000.