Support DREAM Program in Rocky Run

Posted by DREAM Program on September 22, 2014

“Every champion was once a contender that refused to give up.” ~ Rocky Balboa

DREAM is “going the distance” for Philadelphia children living in low-income housing by racing the Rocky Run 5k/10k on November 15th, 2014.

For the city of Philadelphia, the story of Rocky has always been a metaphor for the underdog overcoming great odds to achieve the impossible. Since our launch in January 2014, DREAM has been fighting the good fight for Philadelphia’s most vulnerable youth. By joining our team you will help DREAM expand its reach in providing critical mentoring and resources to youth living in affordable housing.

DREAM’s mission is to change the life outcomes of youth living in affordable housing by providing high quality, college-based Village Mentoring, summer enrichment, local and regional adventures, support for post-secondary success, and an unwavering commitment to dreaming big.

According to reseach conducted by the Pew Trust, Philadelphia has the 6th highest poverty level in the United States. The negative impacts of poverty and growing up in poverty stricken communities can be devastating to the future success of children and youth. Children from low-resourced communities are:

  • 40% to 70% less likely to graduate from high school than their more affluent peers.
  • Twice as likely to be held back a grade and more than twice as likely to not finish high school
  • Very unlikely to achieve a four-year college degree (9% compared to 54% of youth from more affluent communities)

Mentoring is a proven, cost-effective preventative measure to help insulate youth from the negative impacts of poverty; every $1 invested in mentoring today saves $3 in future costs associated with poverty.

DREAM children receive:

  • Weekly one-on-one and group mentoring on college campuses
  • Ongoing support for academic success and college access
  • Introductions to new places and experiences, locally and nationally, including DREAM’s summer adventure facilities (a summer camp in northern Vermont and a sailing program in Boston)
  • Year-round, continuous programming from age 5 through high school graduation

In less than a year, DREAM Philadelphia has already mentored over 60 youth through their partnerships with Temple University and University of Pennsylvania. We have provided enrichment programming, one-on-one mentoring, local and regional adventure trips, a summer program and a college road trip through the Northeast for our teen Mentors in Training.

DREAM’s goals for the future are to enroll more youth, continue to strengthen and enhance our program model, and expand our programming to new communities and college partners. Contributions made from this race will help us acheive these goals and improve the lives and futures of the children we serve.

DREAM believes that there’s a little bit of Rocky in all of us and that every kid deserves a chance to be a champion!

To register or to learn more about the Rocky Run, please visit

To learn more about the DREAM Program, please visit

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