Your support has impacted the lives of hundreds of young men. This year, we share with you the story of Antwan Powell.
Antwan started in Operation DREAM when he was in the 5th grade. Antwan and his friend Freddie joined the program together seeking support from men of color who had the grit and determination to make it despite the many obstacles they faced. Starting in the program, Antwan says that he, “was happy to get out of the house on a Saturday and do something.”
Having started out in our Saturday program, Antwan was able to interact on a weekly basis with positive male role models who would ultimately serve as mentors as he progressed through his adolescence. He enjoyed the field trips, but Antwan also knew that where he wanted to go in life, he would need support. As Antwan grew older, he moved into the Operation Work program.
When asked, Antwan says, “I wanted work experience, real work experience. I wanted to make money for myself so I would not be so dependent on my mom.” With Antwan’s father not being present, Operation DREAM filled this void by providing Antwan with a 24/7 mentor and the work experiences he knew would be valuable to his growth.
“OPERATION WORK GAVE ME OPPORTUNITIES TO WORK AT REAL PLACES AND REAL JOBS. IT GAVE ME REAL WORLD EXPERIENCE, AND IT HELPED ME GET AN IDEA OF WHAT TO EXPECT IN THE REAL WORLD SO I COULD BETTER PREPARE MYSELF”
When we asked Antwan about his mentors he says, “They were like father figures. They were always there to help with everyday situations like helping with homework and other things. My father was not in the picture.”
With the support offered to Antwan, through Operation DREAMon Saturdays, Dream to Achieve tutoring on Sundays, and the Operation Work program, he has made the best of these opportunities and is an example of how your generosity truly changes lives.
After high school graduation, Antwan joined the U.S. Marines,which he says he loves. He was inspired to join because his grandfather was a Korean War veteran and his brother also serves in the Navy.
After returning to Milwaukee, Antwan came back to mentor young men in the Operation DREAM program before enlisting in the police academy and becoming a Milwaukee Police Officer in September of 2018.
Operation DREAM has dozens of stories similar to Antwan's. Your support allows us to be a team and a part of his life’s journey.
Ultimately, without your support, none of this is possible. Your donation positively impacts the lives of our young men collectively and individually. Providing individual support based on our young men’s needs is essential for success. With success comes the need for a broader scope of resources needed to help those who, quite frankly, are not in the position to help themselves.