Front Porch Community Development Association, Inc.
ST PETERSBURG, Florida
Through education, training, collaborative partnerships and economic opportunities, the Front Porch Community Development Association, Inc. (FPCDA) assists businesses, communities and individuals—especially youth and young adults—with self-sustainability efforts. Youth giveaways play a part in its various programs. FPCDA believes health in every aspect—social, financial and physical—is crucial for self-sustainability. Although FPCDA provides programs for all ages, the focus is on youth. As part of a health and wellness educational series, a workshop facilitated by a Crohn’s disease survivor was held. Topics included how people of any age can get the disease, that it can become cancerous and how to prevent it. For an annual Christmas program, FPCDA partners with stores and other organizations to help families in need. These families receive brand-new clothing, shoes, educational materials, toys, jewelry and other gifts. In the past five years, FPCDA has served more than 300 families plus 750 infants, children and youths.Smiling woman holding branded bag. Youth giveaways carry self-sustainability through the years The focus of FPCDA is equipping future generations with tools and resources to carry on as self-sustainable adults. One way it accomplishes this is with the Youth Making Economic Impacts (YMEI) program. YMEI connects young people with business owners and provides training that covers everything from entrepreneurship to financial literacy to budgeting. Despite all the organization’s accomplishments, FPCDA staff still struggled with community awareness. Many said they didn’t know FPCDA still existed. The organization used branding and marketing to re-establish its connection to the community. With a one by one® grant, FPCDA ordered branded laptop cases for YMEI participants. “The carrying cases are very impactful for the YMEI program. They’re not only convenient for the youth to carry their laptop, but they display our branding and make the youth feel connected. Also, since we’re always in need of donations and sponsorships, the carrying cases may help raise awareness to potential donors,” said Lolita Dash-Pitts, executive director.