Homeless Helping Homeless
A college professor challenged students to create a product that filled “actual needs.” Veronica Scott didn’t know it at the time, but that assignment was going to change her life and the life of many others. Working directly with homeless people in Detroit, Veronica began creating prototypes of a coat that would double as a sleeping bag at night.
http://www.empowermentplan.org/ (please watch the video here)
One day, however, a lady came out of a homeless shelter, screaming at Veronica, “We don’t need a coat. A coat is pointless. We need jobs.” After being startled and probably a little offended, Veronica had the “a-ha” moment.
Veronica Scott is now the founder and CEO of The Empowerment Plan. She hires homeless individuals to make this coat/sleeping bag for other homeless individuals. Her employees get job training, a decent wage and whatever else she can provide to get each individual back on their feet. Veronica provides hope and encouragement to individuals who are in dire need of such commodities. She empowers people with a plausible plan to get their life back!
Joe’s Perspective: I am not sure it gets any more innovative & inspiring than this. There are 50,000 homeless individuals in Detroit alone. Can you imagine how cold it gets for these individuals? Not only has Veronica designed a product that can save lives, but she is employing the very people to manufacture this product who need it most. She then secures funding from companies, foundations and individuals to purchase the coats for homeless people. Bravo! It’s this kind of out-of-the-box thinking that can change the world. By the way, Veronica is only 24 years old.
Your Turn: Please place your comments below, (2) like and share our Facebook page (character development & leadership) or (3) tweet to @CDandLeadership)
1. Does this inspire you? Can you begin to think of the contributions you can make to society?
2. Challenge: Do you think your class/school could raise enough money to provide 1 coat for a homeless person? The cost for each coat is $100. If so, the website is pasted above.