Updated: Jan 15
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The Recharge Project, Inc, based in Atlanta. It is a 501(c) 3 nonprofit organization that caters to the needs of children who have experienced the loss of a parent(s) or primary caregiver. In seeing a need for stronger and more consistent support after such loss, they have created a model that provides costless long-term therapeutic support. Their programming aims to bridge this gap in the communities of minorities, focusing on several areas including; mentorship, sponsorship, outreach services, and scholarship opportunities for children and families in need.
The teen chapter focuses teen featuring various teen startups, youth-led organizations, teen entrepreneurs and highlighting them and highlighting the work they do and the positive impact they create on our society. So, we are very happy to have the founder of The Recharge project with us in this conversation and we are looking forward to knowing more about the organization.
So, let us begin!
Q) Would you like to tell our viewers a little bit about yourself and your background?
Ans: I (Portia) am the founder and CEO of The Recharge Project incorporated. Outside of running the non-profit, I have been working in the medical field as a nurse practitioner for about 10 years with a primary background in pediatrics. Therefore I have loved and worked with kids since day one and been a support system for them by shining light on children’s mental health and the importance of mental health.
Q) Would you like to tell us about the background of The Recharge Project and how it came into the picture?
Ans: The inspiration behind The recharge project started from our home. In 2017, I lost my stepfather when my younger brother was eight years old. He was having difficulty overcoming that loss. He was not ready to talk about it. So we tried to figure out ways to get him to discuss his feelings. Working in pediatrics, I always saw kids come in feeling isolated, suicidal, feeling like they have nobody to talk to and I did not want my brother to feel left out. Hence we started little monthly projects at home where my brother would talk about his dad or write letters to his dad. Since then, we had a dream to expand these projects so I decided to start a non-profit that supports children who have experienced the loss of a parent or a primary caregiver in the long term.
Q) How did you come up with the name, ‘The Recharge Project?’
Ans: It took me a long time to figure out what to name our non-profit because I wanted to be strategic about it. One day I prayed about it, took a nap, and woke up feeling all recharged and decided to name it “The Recharge Project.” It’s all about energy healing. When children come into this world, they come with a book of innocence and as life happens, the pages are torn into pieces. Sometimes we just don’t know how to take a pause, reflect on what is going on and recharge back, so I came up with the name ‘The Recharge project’ keeping in mind our vision which is to recharge our mind, body, and soul to get through the trauma.
Q) What are some of the programs and services you offer?
Ans: Our top program is our community outreach. Here in Atlanta, every third weekend, we go out with the children enrolled in the program and do fun activities such as paintball, bowling, painting, etc. We also have meaningful discussions on different topics and debrief afterward. We also do fundraisers periodically to raise money because we do not want our children to have to pay for any of their needs. We also give them scholarship opportunities and mentorship. We not only mentor the kids but also mentor the other organizations on how to incorporate mental health advocacy into their already established programs. Q) How are you planning to bring awareness to mental health issues?
Ans: Every single month, we pick a topic and we elaborate on the topic and that is how we raise awareness within our community. Also, we partner with other organizations internationally, primarily in Africa, and educate their team on the importance of mental health advocacy. Q) Do you wanna highlight your volunteer opportunities?
Ans: We welcome volunteers with open arms to hug outa with our kids. We have a vetted process with complete background checks and training periods to become a volunteer as we like to maintain a realm of consistency, but once a person becomes a volunteer they love it. That is because not only does the person help the kids heal but also heal heals at the same time. Volunteers can sign up online or DM on Instagram Instagram or Facebook Facebook to get in touch. Q) Who are your international partners?
Ans: We have quite a few international partners. The main partner is ‘Papa’s Hands Foundation’ with whom we started ou last September as a memorial for my stepfather’s birthday. Now we have a program called RECHARGE UGANDA which helped us attract a lot of attention. We go out every third weekend, talk about mental health issues, and host events on a particular topic. Recently we also have reached out to three other organizations in Zambia, Ghana, and Rwanda to spread the knowledge of mental health awareness all around the world. Q) What are some upcoming events you have planned for ‘The Recharge Project?’
Ans: My goal is to include scholarship opportunities for kids to assist their education because it is very difficult to transition from the income of two parents to just one after the loss of a parent. So I have been working on this for a couple of years. And the thing that is gonna fund that is our fundraisers. So we have an upcoming fundraiser for the scholarship program that is called ‘Bow ties and Tutus’ in February around Valentine’s day. The next thing we have planned is ‘Healing through giving’ which is a community service and outreach event into the local community and abroad where we work together with the local homeless population. Right now we are also in our ‘ SOCKTOBER’ where we do a drive for socks, jackets, scarves, and everything they need.
Q) Do you have any open positions for the organization right now? Ans: We have a board position coming up as we end our fiscal year. We are looking for a new treasurer. We’re always looking for volunteers who can either be an advocate for the organization with share, like, and post or physically come in and hang out with us monthly consistently. Q) As we have come to the end of the conversation, would you like to give any advice to our viewers? Ans: Firstly I want to thank you guys for having me here, it means the world. All I want to say is that you need to advocate for your community. You need to talk and grieve out loud about what situation you are in or whatever you are going through and seek help whenever you need it. That is the most courageous thing a person can ever do. This has been a very wonderful conversation, thank you for being here and talking about how much mental health is important for children.