By: Jarret Romanello, The St. Lucie Post
Photos: Jackson Romanello, Student Photographer
(FORT PIERCE) Boys and Girls Clubs of St. Lucie County Club Kids pitched business plans during a Shark Tank-like presentation in partnership with the Albert Wilson Foundation during a Life Skills & Leadership Day on May 22, 2021.
Miami Dolphins wide receiver Albert Wilson was on hand at the day-long event that included leadership panels and discussions from business owners, and other Miami Dolphins players.
A panel of local business leaders judged six teams from St. Lucie County as they gained experience from an entrepreneur and startup perspective.
‘We created an event to empower and provide the youth and families in our community with the necessary tools and skills they need to compete and succeed,” Wilson stated.
Club Kids from the Chuck Hill Boys & Girls Club in Port St. Lucie developed a concept to feed the hungry while making a profit selling pizza. Club Director Alya Turner and Teen Futures Coordinator Dallas Gerzine worked with their kids to create the Purposeful Pizza plan.
Faith Miller,14; Jacoby Manning, 13; and Vincent Greco, 14, presented the plan in front of a live audience. The group hopes to open a pizzeria that helps feed the hungry.
At Purposeful Pizza, after your order, you get a chance to buy a $ 1 Post It Note and leave an encouraging message on the wall,” Greco said.
“When someone walks in and has no money to eat, they can grab a note off the wall and exchange it for a slice of pizza,” Manning continued.
“Any profit made off the Post It Notes goes right back into putting more messages of hope on the wall to feed more people,” Miller told The St. Lucie Post. The group is looking to partner with a local pizzeria to bring the idea to light.
Purposeful Pizza won Most Practical Company at the competition. The Chuck Hill Club team will get a VIP trip to a Miami Dolphins game this season.
After the competition and following a lunch provided by Westside Club’s culinary program, club kids and their families broke out into separate leadership panels for men and women along with a discussion on financial literacy. “They talked about leadership and drove the point home that your career doesn’t matter as much as your character,” Tommy John, Director of Outreach for BGCSLC.
“It’s our hope that providing these resources will serve as a foundation towards strengthening our families, encouraging our youth, and developing greater leaders of today and tomorrow,” said Albert Wilson.