When I first met Rick some years ago at a conference in California, he spoke about his passion, StandUp For Kids, a program committed to the rescue of homeless and street kids. The first thing that struck me was "Why didn't I know any of this?" and the second was "I have to get to know this man better…talk to him and find out how I could support him, even from Canada." He touched me in a deeply profound way. One way was, I could spread the word to my blog readers, my colleagues and friends. Another way was to publish a subsequent conversation we had years later so readers everywhere could truly understand what Rick and StandUp For Kids was all about. Now, I ask you to join me in supporting Rick through all the connections we have on social media and beyond.
"This isn't about money; it’s about caring! What we've accomplished has no price tag. We know we've made a difference in the lives of thousands of kids. I would have paid that price for one! What we do really helps. You see kids get off the streets, and this work provides me with meaning and purpose.” - Rick Koca (from Leaders: Their Stories, Their Words)
In Rick's words, "Alex Petrou, from Australia, is Riding Across America to raise awareness about homeless and street youth in our country. Alex is making the 3,000 journey from Los Angeles to Washington, DC to help us raise funds to support our programs.
Alex has challenged me to raise more funds for our homeless youth than he can for Australia's homeless youth. So, you up for helping me win this challenge? Ask your friends and co-workers to match your donation."
"Each week our programs reach out to more than 1,000 kids to help feed, clothe, provide hygiene products, and assist in any way we can. That means that there are still more than 1.2 million kids that we're not helping.
We're 99% volunteers, and have in the past 22 years, became the largest organization in the USA to help homeless and street youth. We know, these past few years have been difficult on us all, and as we head into 2012, we need your help more than ever. Shamefully, with the economy the way it is, more kids are ending up on the streets.
We have several wonderful things happening through the end of the year; LeAnn Rimes with her new single "Give", the band Switchfoot, who has been supporting us for many years, with their new single "Dark Horses", and a national event called "The Big Purple Couch". All of this to raise awareness and support for America's more than 1.3 million homeless and street youth. Visit our web site, get involved, make a difference, check it out. www.standupforkids.org "
Founder, StandUp For Kids
Blog it, Tweet it, and Facebook it....share it with everyone you know and say "Enough! We're going to call an end to youth homelessness!"