In a world where terrible stories flood your timeline on a daily basis, it can be easy to lose faith in humanity. But after hearing the dreams of the kids from 5000 Role Models, hope is quickly restored.
JaxSports Council, a local organization responsible for bringing various sporting events to the city of Jacksonville, partners with Dupont Middle School to provide a sports career day showing kids in school the various options to work in sports. Kids from all over the city attend this career day but its lead by the group from 5000 Role Models.
Started in 1993 Congresswoman Frederica S. Wilson was serving on the Miami-Dade School Board and noticed young minority boys were becoming at-risk for dropping out of school, incarcerated or entering the drug trade. To combat this trend, Wilson started 500 Role Models where adult male mentors were given the responsibility of helping to raise young boys into young men. The program received a ton of attention, even from former Presidents, that the name was changed to 5000 Role Models and has expanded to Duval County as well as Pinellas County.
Dressed in their signature suits and red ties, the boys who participate in 5000 Role Models are responsible for talking with each of the guests of career day and escorting kids from other schools around the room to answer questions about working sports.
While many of the tables have a traditional “Here is what we do in sports and why we do it” setup, I decided to flip the script by asking the kids about THEIR future job and career aspirations.
On the table, I setup my livestream video equipment along with a quick questionnaire asking the kids what they wanted their side hustle to be. After filling it out, they got mic’d up and talked into the camera about the fields they aspire to work in.
And it was a hit.
It wasn’t long before I had a group of the cutest girls on the planet showing me their YouTube page, talking about how they want to use the platform to fuel their dreams. Some of them started helping to film, mic up the other kids, and ask interview questions to the others coming through. The stories that they captured were one of the most inspiring days of my life and thinking about it again makes me emotional. Who’s cutting onions again?
Check out the video below, almost entirely shot by kids under the age of 15, to hear about their dreams and career aspirations. Hopefully, you’ll get some positive vibes from it and help to support the local companies in your area to do the same as 5000 Role Models.