Thursday, June 20, 2013

I joined Public Allies because...

(reflections from a few of this year's Public Allies in Miami)
I joined Public Allies because I wanted to give back to my community. I wanted to make my hometown a better place for the locals, beyond South Beach. Public Allies has given me a new interest and a more holistic approach to my career plans. I have made friends with people around me with a similar mindset of public service and values serving as motivation along the way and for the future.- Jennifer V
I wanted to learn more about Miami. I wanted to serve and be involved in this community. Public Allies has given me a support system, a network of lifelong friends, stronger sense of purpose and clearer goals, and resources/opportunities/ and connections. – De’Azia B.

I joined Public Allies for two reasons. I needed a job and I really wanted to aid others in becoming financially free and stable. It’s my greater belief that financial stability is essential to our mental and physical health, family upbringing and the opportunities an individual can provide for their children. Financial stability factors into numerous aspects of life and will make for a better society as more families are educated. The experience as a Public Ally has given me nonprofit experience, professional development, financial knowledge, and experience to say the least. I have also been blessed with a new set of dynamic brothers and sisters who are diverse and alike in the same. -Vaughan J.

I joined Public Allies because after completing a year of service (through CityYear), I felt that I had more to give to my community. I believe that nothing is more valuable an investment than time, so I decided to continue to give that for the betterment of Miami. Public Allies has given me LIFE! It has given me a greater look into my community from a different lens and insight into how nonprofits function. I have found a family in my cohort and am honestly unsure how I would have made it without them. -Janite P.  

Join Catalyst Miami July 19 at 7:30 p.m. for our 13th Annual Theater and Awards Event, when we will honor the Health Foundation of South Florida for 20 years of helping youth bloom, as well as Genie Langan, a pioneer educator at Mater Academy. All proceeds from ticket sales benefit Public Allies Miami. Read more here.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Meet the ReServists!

One of the great things about working at Catalyst Miami is that people from a myriad of backgrounds and at all different places in their life are here working together for the same cause. From student interns to retired professionals giving back, we're not short on diversity! Today we want to highlight some of our newest family members who are part of ReServe Miami, a program that matches professional who are 55+ with service opportunities. These ReServists have a wealth of experience and talents and are using them in their work with Catalyst Miami's Prosperity Campaign, which matches low- to moderate-income people with public benefits and financial literacy training to help them thrive.

Miltoria Fordham recently retired after serving nine years as the President & CEO of Partners for Self Employment, Inc. a local nonprofit. She has served on various nonprofit boards and has tremendous experience in nonprofit strategic planning, management, development and organization. She is the former Executive Director of the Martin Luther King Development Corporation. Currently, she is President of the Board of the Community Action Agency Foundation which provides financial support and in-kind contribution to various programs operated by Miami-Dade County Community Action and Human Services Department. Miltoria is also a member of Booker T. Washington Alumni Association which provides support for low-income and homeless students and the school with financial and in-kind support and in-kind contributions.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

An Intern's Journey: Bryan Troupe

Catalyst Miami is proud to be a part of the lives of the many passionate people who work with us as interns, AmeriCorps members and volunteers. This week we are spotlighting former intern Bryan Troupe.

"I was extremely interested in the different programs I came across at Catalyst Miami. I began envisioning the enormous amount of positive change that could be made in communities and how ‘real’ voice could be given to citizens. My internship experience with Catalyst Miami allowed me to realize that there was a different way to make positive change in communities and among citizens.
Catalyst Miami is a huge part of the reason I changed my major to Public Administration –and I haven’t doubted my decision since. I now want to create a nonprofit agency, which includes a multitude of programs for things such as education and healthy eating. After I obtain my degree, I will be able to start on my goal."
-Bryan Troupe, Former Intern with Catalyst Miami

Monday, June 3, 2013

Little Havana MOVES: Kick-off/ Lanzamiento and Mapping Workshop This Saturday

Each year the members of Public Allies Miami develop Team Service Projects (TSPs) in order to complete their year of service. These TSPs are an opportunity for the Allies to learn about a particular community within Miami and strategize ways they can help strengthen that community. This post was contributed by the Little Havana TSP group as a reflection on their project and an invitation to join them in celebrating the neighborhood of Little Havana.  

Over the past nine months, Los Allies Unidos--the AmeriCorps Public Allies in Little Havana--have been connecting with community leaders and stakeholders to create a unique and lasting project in Little Havana. During this time, they have practiced Asset-Based Community Development and focused on building a stronger community from the inside out. They were happy to find assets everywhere: in community-based organizations, informal associations and individuals.
Emerging from this focus on community voices, Los Allies Unidos began developing a project that would bring folks together for a common cause, while creating a forum for public discussion.
Their project, Little Havana MOVES, will kick off with a community mapping event where residents and non-residents document their journeys through the neighborhood and note areas of pedestrian concern. While exploring Little Havana, participants will record stories and issues facing the community. The workshop and move-about will take place from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. at Domino Park/ Maximo Gomez Park on Saturday, June 8.
Through this activity, Los Allies Unidos seek to boost residents' resources, knowledge and impact to create a culture of neighborhood and pedestrian safety. Following the mapping event, Little Havana MOVES will host a forum for visual and oral storytelling. 

Los Allies Unidos are excited to partner with ConnectFamilias, Catalyst Miami and other community-based organizations to co-create this unique project in the community.
For more information, email Los Allies Unidos at: