Portland, December 7th. More than 800 supporters crowded the Left Bank Annex for Levé’s Ninth Annual Charity Ball. The grass-root charity created by young women in Portland selects a nonprofit each year and “I Have a Dream” Oregon was the fortunate recipient for 2012. Levé board, committee and advisory members posed for a photo before the ball. The group is close to reaching its $50,000 fundraising goal. The Levé’s auction alone raised a ground-breaking $12,000 with items like a tasting wine excursion and a wedding package.
A group of girlfriends founded Levé out of a desire to actively make a difference in our local community. Portland has been our home for the majority of our lives, providing us with a deep connection and passion for keeping the Pacific Northwest’s most vital resources and programming vibrant and successful. For this reason, and the desire to bring together family, friends and the community for a celebration in support of a local nonprofit, Levé hosted its first Charity Ball in 2004.
After our first event, it became quickly apparent that we are in a unique position to catalyze support from a wider network. We feel fortunate to have enjoyed a supportive community in Portland and the consistent encouragement of family and friends in all of our endeavors. For that reason, we share the sentiment that it is our responsibility to give back to the community that has provided us with so much. As young girls, we watched our parents engage with and support the services of local nonprofits. Our action is modeled on their example.
Levé is a completely volunteer-run organization. Our board is made up of young, professional women who are sharing our time, resources and expertise with causes we value. We believe the work we do for Levé is not only making us better individuals and members of our community, but also better employees and students—mastering skills, building leadership and inspiring creativity.
“I Have a Dream” Foundation – Oregon was founded in 1990 to help low income children reach success in school and college.
We deliver a proven combination of core services to students: long-term relationships with caring adults, academic and personal/social support services, and creating a “culture of college” within schools and the students’ families.
Since 1990, ten entire 3rd grade classes have been “adopted” with supportive services to help student
dreamers succeed through college. Our organization has been able to more than double graduation rates for these students and impact the community through reduced discipline problems and juvenile delinquency. Nearly 900 students have benefited from “I Have a Dream” Foundation programs in Oregon through this model.
In 2010, we established the first “Dreamer School” in the nation. This bold new initiative will expand the impact from 300 to 3,000 kids per year, all within this decade. Our first Dreamer School, Alder Elementary, is one of the most poverty-stricken schools in the state and serves as a beacon of light for the community with its programs and services. “I Have a Dream” is partnering with over a dozen other non-profit organizations to transform the lives of every student in this school. Within the next several years, additional Dreamer Schools will be added throughout Oregon.