Word Count: 338
Read Time: 1:18
With the generous $20,000 grant from AT&T, 30 of our local youth have embarked on the exciting journey of learning to code! We are over-the-moon and thrilled at the ripple effects a program of this caliber will have on the present and future of the children able to receive immersive training. It's one thing to have a lecture (which is valuable), it's a game changer to have interactive training by one of the gems of the valley and FIATM COO, David Layne's brother, Donnell Layne. Donnell Layne is a multi-hyphenated guru of all things tech related. He is the Director of Stem at Moreno Valley College, Engineer, Owner of TwinFlames and founder of non-profit, Bridging the Gap (to name a few of his accomplishments and endeavors). His mission to share the myriad of ways that STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathmatics) influences are lives is admirable.
The attendees are encouraged and challenged to not only show up, but to participate. Their ability to be afforded such a unique opportunity is precisely why we are here. I remember growing up and joining the computer club at my school. I learned our version of coding. Heck, we didn't even call it coding it was referred to as computer programming. I share this because we would file into the computer lab on our lunch break and learn how to program. We were 9 strong and I was the only girl! It warms my heart to see how things have changed for the better. At the time of this post, 5 classes have been successfully completed.
Thank you to AT&T for your generous gift that made this possible for the students, the students (and their support system for getting them to the Coding Camp), David Layne for facilitating the moving parts to bring the Coding Camp to life, Donnell Layne for sharing his brilliance with the students and The Team at FIATM for implementing such a worthwhile skill set of training that will positively impact the attendees.
Until next week,
Questions? Email me: firstname.lastname@example.org
Word Count: 361
I'm sure if pressed you could come up with a laundry list of what is not going the best. Heck, at any given moment many of us can. However, what if instead we changed our view? What can be accomplished? What can be overcome? I think a lot. What could happen if instead of praying, wishing and hoping for a lighter load, we prayed for a stronger back? Perhaps we'd confirm that we can do more than we gave ourselves credit for. Or maybe we could experience a few suddenlies that work out a stubborn challenge or two. We may even experience a miracle. The possibilities are endless. The mindset of praying for a lighter load is limited. It's actually confining. It means that one has a movie in their mind that is already casted and scripted out. It also means that the solution is finite. Why would we want to participate in that? I'll admit it is tempting.
However, if I think of resisting that temptation my creative thinking has a space to expand and thrive in. I've just manufactured a safe harbor for solutions. Think about it. Remember a time when you thought there was no way through, around, over or under a challenge? Guess what? You got through it, around it, over or under it. How do I know that? Because you're still here reading this unorthodox word today. Regardless of where you find yourself recognize that the muscles (pun intended) you build by going through, around, over or under whatever you're facing right now are precisely what you need for the next chapter in this journey we call life. I don't know about you, but that gives me hope.
I'll leave you with this thought that I have on an internal loop. It has made me get up one more time when I thought I had no more left: What brought you here, won't take you there. I've thought about this countless times. It has encouraged me. Chastised me. Haunted me. It's definitely challenged me. I now challenge you. Don't pray for a lighter load, pray for a stronger back.
Until next week!
Word Count: 276
Read Time: 1:03
This is a PSA announcing the new 988 Hotline that was unveiled on July 15, 2022. Verywell Health published an article sharing the features of this resource. On an almost daily basis we are hearing and reading about people feeling hopeless and helpless. Admittedly, this can be deemed as a very sensitive topic. I'm broaching it because FIATM is known to address needs. This is no exception. Here is the article link for your reference:
I personally hope that at some point the stigma and shame attached to emotional and mental challenges admittance will decrease. As a society there should be unwavering support for someone that goes beyond recognizing the need for help. The act of courage to seek it out and follow through is admirable. Again, in my opinion.
Consider that when there is a fire or physical health emergency we reflexively know to dial 911. Unfortunately, until now we have not had an easy to remember resource in the event of a mental emergency. So, if you or someone you know is in need of assistance share the 988 hotline with them.
Until next week,
Recently I read the best definition distinctions between knowledge and wisdom. It said knowledge is making the right choice with all the information. Wisdom is making the right choice without all the information. So what does this have to do with FIATM? Glad you asked. Many times we are faced with tremendous, heart tugging, tear jerker needs. Of course we want to say yes to each request. However, we must be vigilant and responsible in prioritizing our next best steps. I like to say, "What brought you here won't take you there". In other words, the mindsets, practices and protocols that were acceptable yesterday simply won't fit with where we're heading today and tomorrow. FIATM is at an exciting crossroads that I wish I could share with you. With excitement comes deep soul searching, digging and mining for resources, tools and ingenuity that will carry us to the next place of responsibility. Keep in mind that responsibility is responding to the ability within. It is encumbent upon each of us to respond to the ability within from peak to peak. I'm not by any means suggesting that this is easy. It's simply a requirement. One of the best ways that I know to do this is to delve into biographies and autobiographies. Recently my best friend offhandedly lamented about an impending and daunting idea of starting over. Secretly I understood full on what was being shared with me. However, for the purpose of the big picture I knew I had to politely disagree with the train of thought and revisit my inner possibility meter. I instantly thought of Colonel Sanders. Yes! KFC Colonel Sanders. He was mired down with many failures throughout his life. His resiliency paid off. In his 60's while on social security he successfully sold his first franchise. Now, he lived to be 90 and worked up until 30 days before he left this earth plane. Imagine that. It's proof positive that if we gather all the information we can which we've learned is knowledge we are well equipped. On the opposite side sometimes it's blind faith that things work out without all the information. I also consider that grace.
Wherever you find yourself I encourage you to search for info and then make the best decision for yourself. Who knows. You may live to be 90 and have people all over the globe remembering you for your willingness to go for it!
Until next week,
Yes!!! You read the title correctly: FIATM provides Childhood Insurance. What is Childhood Insurance? In haste you may have misread and thought that FIATM is offering insurance on your child. No. However, if you are looking for insurance on your child we can make an introduction on your behalf. What we offer is Childhood Insurance. In the news in an alarming rate you hear and read about the loss of innocence of our youth. When did this happen? When did this become okay? Not sure. I never thought it would become necessary to reminisce about days gone by and compare them to this present day. I thought that is what old people do sitting on a rocking chair on a creaky wooden porch. I thought this is what “Old Man Williams” used to do when he would chase us from his home for fear we’d step on his lawn. Or Mr. Smitty when he would grouse about the length of our skirts as young ladies. All of these things were happening because 1) you actually knew your neighbors 2) elders felt compelled to provide words of wisdom and correction (and your parents appreciated it) and 3) this was happening during a time where many children walked around with a string around their necks to hold the key to their home. This generation was referred to as ‘Latch-Key” kids.
We are also the generation that respected the street lights, knew that if our parents beckoned us home by using our first, middle and last name we were in trouble, were members of afterschool programs and lived by the “it takes a village” motto. Now, fast forward to today where 8 and 9 year olds carry computers in their pockets, hang out at Starbucks, struggle with self image issues at an alarming rate, suffer with isolation and much more. We could consider this current epidemic as Childhood Lost. Here is where FIATM comes in!
FIATM offers a safe haven for children to discuss issues, challenges and concerns. These opportunities occur at select school campuses weekly, through
Sports activities, our ESTEAM program, free mentoring, tutoring and computer lab. This is how FIATM is providing childhood insurance. Remember the saying, “the idol mind is the devil’s workshop”? FIATM is committed to positively impacting communities, one family at a time. Feel comfortable considering helping us with your resources, talents and time. If you have specific questions, feel comfortable reaching out to me at: Jacqui@FIATMGroupInc.org.
Until next week,
Read time 1:03
F.I.A.T.M. is leading the way in recognizing the need for our youth to receive financial literacy. Our ESTEAM (Economics- Financial Literacy, Science, Technology, Arts + Math) program. Several years ago, comedian, Sinbad publicly discussed the ‘Digital Divide’ in the predominately POC (People of Color) communities. Now, this is not across the board. However, there is always room for improvement. Recently, I came across a post on mediatakeout.com in which rapper, Jim Jones discussed the importance of the youth needing money mentors. Jones candidly shared the pitfalls of not being exposed to how to make money, the value of a dollar and the consequences of your lack of knowledge. The biggest takeaway is precisely what compelled F.I.A.T.M. to offer the ESTEAM program: Applied Knowledge Is Power. It is imperative to know at minimal a working knowledge of block chain, cryptocurrency, balancing a check book, how to write a check, credit and much more. Years ago in both Junior and Senior High School there were elective classes called Home Economics where you took a cursory dive into life applicable studies. Needless to say, those days are long gone. Add to that the demands that parents have these days and it’s no secret why this much needed topic has landed on the bottom of things to discuss.
F.I.A.T.M. endeavors to meet basic and latent needs. This is simply another reason that you can feel comfortable sponsoring our program. If you’re interested in reading the article I referenced, you can find it here:
If you have a heart toward empowering our youth with your skills, time or resources feel comfortable sending me an email: Jacqui@FiatmGroupInc.org. I’d love to enter into a conversation with you.
Until next week,
july 23, 2022 lunch+learn+connect event is being postponed. will update with registration link once new date is set.
Read Time: 1:08
Word Count: 312
EVENT IS POSTPONED!!!
F.I.A.T.M. ( Family Is All That Matters) founder, Kuba Brown a.k.a. KB recognizes that it takes a village to make any significant impact in your family, community, organization, business and entity. Being a strong believer in leading by example, he has fostered a supportive environment in which heart-centric community leaders can gather together in fellowship, networking, encouragement and breaking bread. It has been so successful that KB didn't feel right keeping this treasure trove amongst the chosen few. As a result, the invitation has been submitted and accepted by Attorney, Anne Marie Duncan to share her extensive knowledge about how charitable organizations can benefit from being listed as a beneficiary in a living trust endowment directive. This is a tremendous revenue generating strategy of sustainability for a 501c3 charitable organization. A financial endowment is a legal structure for managing, and in many cases indefinitely perpetuating, a pool of financial, real estate, or other investments for a specific purpose according to the will of its founders and donors.
We are extremely fortunate to have someone with direct knowledge and inner workings of endowments to be willing to share her knowledge with us. Attorney Anne Marie Duncan is a trusted friend of mine that has the unique ability to drill down complex and complicated into digestible terms. On a personal note she is a great deal of fun and very relatable. I've had the pleasure of attending charitable and social events with her and can vouch for her professionalism and her witty sense of humor. If you find yourself in driving distance of Riverside, CA I encourage you to use the link below and register for this one-of-a-kind event. Seating is limited in an effort to continue creating a space where everyone is heard and have the ability to receive what they need for their organization.
REGISTRATION LINK IS DISABLED
Until next week,
Byline: As a strategy for clients, Dobens' implemented Lunch+Learn+Connect using her ConneCTA system of networking tool. Successfully introducing 371 individuals, salespeople, good causes and charities to her client(s) over a two year time span.
Read Time: 1:46
Word Count: 4:86
Earlier today I thought about a hiking trail that I frequented often. One Sunday morning I came across this tree that you see pictured above. I felt there was a life lesson in this tree. It spoke to me. Not literally, of course. It obviously has been through several seasons. It's also glaringly obvious that it is broken. What is not as obvious in this particular shot is how much it is flourishing! Upon much reflection you can revisit times in which you thought you'd bend until you break. Disappointments. Trauma. Tragedy. The good news is you're still here. Proof positive that you can bend and not break. In oter words one area of your life may not be going as you had planned. That doesn't mean that all of your life has to be in disrepair. You can still flourish even though you are broken. You have to push through. You must. You need you. We need you.
New family members of FIATM may not know about the fire that ravaged through the headquarters (as well as other buildings) in Moreno Valley. Talk about a bend, not break moment. Not minimizing the devestation or the impact I'm simply sharing an incredible example of resiliency. A lighthouse. Why would FIATM get back up? Simple answer: Purpose Driven Mission. Now, this is not a trite phrase. It is undeniably the necessary ingredient needed to get back up when under no fault of your own tragedy strikes.
A literary business book classic, Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill states: "On the opposite side of every adversity is an equal or greater reward". Now, admittedly you have to look for it. Sometimes it's hidden. Sometimes it's buried. None the less, you've got to be willing to hunt and peck for it. In this case, the equal or greater reward for FIATM is the headquarters at Tyler Galleria. There is enough room here to provide a safe computer lab for students, E.S.T.EA.M. (Economics/Financial Literacy, Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math). For decades now many have lamented over the digital divide, lack of opportunities for POC in science, tech and more. Well, FIATM is successfully putting shoe leather to the lip service that "somebody" should do "something "to change this. Hello. Nice to make your acquaintance. We at FIATM are the "somebodies" that are doing quite a few "somethings" to provide our own empowering equal opportunities.
Feel comfortable checking out the programs tab on this site to see a small spattering of the positive imapct that we are continuing to make in various communities.
Also, because of what we are actively doing, you can feel comfortable donating and volunteering.
Untile next week,
Byline: Avid hiker at Santa Rosa Plateau until 2 deer reminded me that it's their home and I can only visit during posted hours (true story), lover of Havarti cheese and Friendship Bread.
Word Count: 608
Read Time: 2:13
Recently my uncle passed away. Prior to his passing I had the honor of being able to talk to him about our family, his life and what he wanted his legacy to be. Dictionary.com defines legacy as: Anything handed down from the past. With the exciting crossroads that F.I.A.T.M. is facing now, it's beneficial and imperative to look back in order to go forward. I like to share that what brought you here, won't take you there. However, the past has wisdom, experience, character challenging and building elements that are necessary for building courage, determination and grit. As I sat with my uncle during his final stages on this dimension I was inspired by some of his answers and began to see a parallel between his mindset and the leadership of F.I.A.T.M.. My first question to my uncle was, "Do you have any regrets"? His response was no. He shared that the opportunities he missed caused him to speak encouraging words to his family. Having grown up as the youngest of six children and a pretty wide gap between the eldest (my dad) and him spoiled him. You see, everyone catered to him. Looking back he shared he regretted his birth order which obviously he had no say in. If you were to ask F.I.A.T.M. as an entity if there are any regrets? You'd be met with a resounding yes! The only regret would be to not have let more people know in a more effective way about what we are doing and why. Now, let's embrace what iconic author and activist, Maya Angelou would say in this instance: "When you know better, you do better". This is precisely what we are doing right now.
I asked my uncle his feelings on the importance of role models and mentoring in our society. He trailed off for a moment causing me to think he was no longer lucid or that the meds had kicked in. Fortunately, that was not the case. Even though his breathing became labored I saw a sharpness of determination in his eyes. He looked at me with a steel stare that I wasn't accustomed to seeing from him. I waited for what felt like minutes for him to formulate what seemed of great importance to him. He began very slowly and deliberately to share with me about his first mentor, my dad. He shared that his big brother took his role very seriously especially after their father died. You see, he didn't have the same timeframe nor quality of time with their father that my dad did. He paused and then continued that our legacy of intention is as important as our actualized legacy. The reason being that sometimes the way something starts with one person at the helm becomes even more confirmed by the second or third string that join in to add to the intended outcome. In my families case my dad joining the military, moving from Florida to New York and ultimately California caused my uncle to migrate to California from Florida. As a matter of fact, he lived with us upon arriving to California until he got on his feet. In F.I.A.T.M.'s case, there has been a steady ebb and flow of talented, passionate and heart centric individuals and organizations that have lent their treasures to F.I.A.T.M. which has made it as robust and relevant as it is today and going forward.
If you feel compelled to add making a positive impact in others lives part of your legacy, feel comfortable responding here or send me a quick email at: email@example.com. We'd love to hear from you.
Until next week,