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  • Writer's pictureStacy Dodd

Getting Acquainted with The Hope Center


No Matter Your Situation, There's Always Hope

In 2014, I came into the DeSoto County area with a dream to help students make right choices. When I was a child, I was a latch-key kid with little to no supervision. As a result, I ended up as a drug addict and eventually became homeless.

Fast Forward to Today

Today, I am a successful executive businessman who loves Jesus, leads recovery outreach groups, and works as an ambassador for Vertava Health, a drug rehabilitation facility in the Memphis metro area.

So Where Does The Hope Center Come In?

I had a dream of helping kids like me make right choices. Kids of all ages need guidance and sometimes they don't get that at home.

  • They come from a single parent family,

  • They live with a guardian or friends who aren't their family,

  • They come from great families who love them and give them everything they could ever want...

But they all make bad choices.

In 2014, I met with the principal at Horn Lake Intermediate School in DeSoto County. Mr. Kenneth McKinney had the same dream as I did, and although his background was different than mine, God put us together to make an impact on this county. The mission is clear: our kids need help.

We started with $60. We spoke with the school superintendant who allowed us to use the school gym at Southaven Middle School and then God provided the kids. The more we met, the more kids began to trust us, and became open to us speaking truth into their lives.

Little did we know that we would see some great returns on our $60 investment. Since then, we have seen kids grow up and become young men and women of integrity and leadership. We have partnered with the NBA Memphis Grizzlies Mentoring Foundation to teach us the best way to mentor kids. We have another one of our kids who just gave us $10,000. He is now a first-round draft pick headed to the NFL.

What a difference eight years makes!

Why Should You Trust Us With Your Kids?

Sometimes kids need that extra something. They need a listening ear. They need a fist bump, a welcoming smile, and sometimes a shoulder to cry on.

That is why we're here.

At The Hope Center, your kids are safe. They can play, they can talk about their issues, they can eat, and be surrounded by those who consider them to be MVP's.

- Your kids MATTER.

- Your kids are VALUABLE.

- Your kids have PURPOSE.

We envision The Hope Center to be a community center for all people in all walks of life. When we start with kids in 4th-6th grade, we are catching them at that in-between stage of coming out of elementary and getting ready for middle school. This is a major transition period for kids. They need to know how to deal with bullies, predators, broken friendships, gangs, and how to be a friend to those they see without a friend.

So, when you see that Hope Center flyer come home with your child, or our slides on social media, you can nod your head and say, "Okay, I get it."

This is who we are.

We care.

We are ready to help your kids make the right choices that will take them into adulthood. We see future leaders, future politicians, future business owners, future parents.

While The Hope Center activities are for the kids, you can join us to see what you think. Visit us during one of our events and check it out. We'll save you a seat. You'll even get a fist bump, a welcoming smile, a listening ear, or a shoulder to cry on.

That's ok with us.

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