Wheels of Change
Hello! My name is Kevin Barber (age 16) and I need your help raising money to help give some of our homeless people in San Diego the opportunity to work. I’m helping bring a program called, “Wheels of Change” to San Diego that’s already successful in 12 other cities. Alpha Project, a nonprofit with more than 30 years experience working with our homeless, is running this program. Mayor Faulconer and Councilman Scott Sherman have given us their strong support.
The program is simple. Several days a week a van will pick up homeless people who express an interest in working. The van will take them to work picking up trash, pulling weeds, clearing brush, etc. At the end of the day, workers will be driven back to Alpha Project, or to the City's new tent structures for the homeless, and will be compensated for their work. Here they may also possibly get shelter arranged. The goal is to get the homeless connected with social services they need, into housing, and offer them the dignity of working. It empowers people and gives them work. We believe this is a win-win for the City, the homeless, and our community.
With 11,000 homeless people in San Diego, and 150 already on our waitlist to go out on the van, I need your help. Wheels of Change gives jobs to the homeless, helps get them services they need, and helps clean up our community. We all win! Thank you for your support and tax deductible donation. The money you give will go directly to Wheels of Change program at Alpha Project(a 501c).
More information can be found on our website, http://www.wheelsofchangeprogram.com
CNN article: The homeless in San Diego are getting jobs-thanks to a 16 year old boy
San Diego Union Tribune:
TED talk, teenager led to homeless work program
Wheels of Change -Fox 5 San Diego live
Daily Blast Live:
Currently, Wheels of Change operates 1 van 3 days/week and our homeless are paid $11.50/hr. Alpha Project, a nonprofit (501(c)(3)), is running Wheels of Change.
Workers are so thankful for the opportunity to work with Wheels of Change, contribute to the community, and make a little money to buy their personal items, or buy a bus pass for a job interview. Over and over again, they tell us how inspired they are and how thankful they are that people care. They even line up at 2 AM every morning Wheels of Change operates, in order to have a chance to go out on the work crew!
Here are just a few of the stories from some of our homeless participants...
"My first experience with Alpha Project’s Wheels of Change was an enlightening experience. I watched many others assist less fortunate homeless people for a long time and to be homeless and still be able to clean a community and assist people myself is fulfilling. It’s like being able to perform my life’s work one step, one piece of trash, one person at a time. I hope I can continue to further help Alpha Project impact lives and communities. With my $46, I will use it for food and clothing for my people and myself."-Greg
"This was my first day working for Alpha Project and I am feeling very privileged to have this opportunity. I haven’t worked since 2014 so I am glad to have finally gotten a chance to get back on the job type of track. Thank you. I’m needing a bicycle so I am planning to save the $46. Thank you Wheels of Change for my chance to make my change for a better life for myself. This program is a blessing"-Annette
“Not only was the day pleasant, but so were the attitudes of people in the community. Seeing their smiles of approval bolstered my self-confidence. I soon found my head lifting higher as I helped beautify the area where I used to pitch my tent. You’re causing me to have faith in humanity again! THANK YOU!!”-Charles B.
"I would like to thank Alpha Project for giving me the opportunity to go out on Wheels of Change. Our supervisor had lots of patience and knowledge and gave good instructions. I will be giving $30 of the money I made to my wife for our savings for our future home, $10 will be used for myself and $6 for whatever my wife needs. Thank you for this opportunity. I greatly appreciate it and I hope to be a part of the work team again."-Gustavo
Financially, the City has committed $125,000 to help fund our program. Thanks to donors as yourselves, we have raised additional funding. Also, the Lucky Duck Foundation has donated a 2nd van. Peter Seidler (SD Padres), Dan Shea (Donovan’s Steakhouse) have been financial and strategic supporters of Wheels of Change. The Moores foundation, Davis Charitable fund etc are also supporters.
Our current goal is to raise more money so we can operate a 2nd van to employ 10 more homeless individuals daily, and also to find sustainable funding sources. We really appreciate your support and help in changing people’s lives. All donations are tax deductible. Have a blessed day and Happy Holidays!
"My first experience working on the Wheels of Change crew was not only fun but turns out it made me feel appreciated by the community as well. I had several people stop and thank me or tell me what a great job I was doing. Needless to say it made my heart smile a bit and made me feel good about taking pride in my work. I plan on spending my earnings on a bus pass."-LaChana
"I enjoyed my time picking up trash while working on the Wheels of Change crew. It gives you a good feeling knowing that your helping the community, instead of harming the community. I plan on using the $46 wisely. I’m going to put away at least $30 and use the other $16 on food and maybe some cheap clothes."-Zachary
"It was a beautiful, warm, sunny spring day. My first day working with Alpha Project’s work crew. Not only was the day pleasant, but so were the attitudes and dispositions of the people in the community I worked in. Seeing their smiles of approval bolstered myself confidence, and it warmed my heart. I soon found my head gradually lifting higher as I continued to beautify the area where I used to pitch my tent every night since November of 2017. The supervisors that were over our crew (KB & Julius) were both courteous, but also motivating as well. I am grateful for their wise and uplifting suggestions and advice. Working under them only made me want to do the absolute best I could to represent Alpha Project. The money I earned was a bonus. I was able to replenish my hygiene products and have enough to pay my tithes this coming Easter Sunday! Thank you from the bottom of my heart Bob and to the rest of the staff at Alpha. You’re causing me to have hope in humanity again!" -Charles Berry
"Hi! It's me June Bug. I have planned to spend my earnings first on blessing someone else. Done! And then buy some much needed things. I'm so thankful and grateful to be here in this tent, you are all awesome and caring to us all. I thank you from the bottom of my heart. It makes me more motivated in volunteering around our big white home. Thank You! Thank You!" - June Bug
"To Whom it May Concern, I am thankful to the Wheels of Change Program because I was given a chance to make $46 for 4 hours of work. With this money I was able to renew my bus pass for $18, get a dog collar and a new dress. Thank you for letting me be a part of this wonderful program. It really helped me out. I have a bus pass for job searches and a new dress if I need to go to an interview." - Rosemarie Rivera
"Seems the Wheels of Change here at the Alpha Project tent never stops turning. I can't say enough about the staff. It takes a lot to keep this place so clean and they keep it safe as well. For the shower, my bed, the hot meal and how can I forget about the continental breakfast. Today I got to go to work just like a real job and got paid cash. I'm so humbled and thankful to be doing the things I need to become a respected member of the community again. Thank You All!" - Francis
And last week, someone in the community stopped in the middle of the street and gave each of the workers an extra $10 for their hard work.
Thank you all so much for what you have given, and continue to give to our community. We are helping one person at a time!