Our Blue Belt Year
A message from Connor Cook,
Executive Director at PowerUP
2021 was PowerUP’s Blue Belt year. Our founding year, 2017, was our White Belt year. We had a successful trial with 15 kids and got our 501c3 status. In 2018, our Yellow Belt year, we adapted our initial concept, and began to grow with two new partners – La Amistad and Agape. 2020 was our Green Belt Year. We thought COVID would keep us from serving our scholarship students, since martial arts training has historically been in person. Instead, we added a key board member, Tom Rawls, who helped us see COVID as an opportunity, and we grew! Despite the various setbacks of the pandemic, 2021 was a year of significant growth for PowerUP. I joined as Executive Director, we served nearly 150 new students, we received applications from over a third of our target service area, and we raised a target surpassing $540,000. It is truly an honor to work with an organization with such great potential and a responsibility that I do not take lightly. Our progress this year would not have been possible without the support of our sponsors. On behalf of the PowerUP Board and myself, thank you to all of our donors for your belief in our vision, and for helping kids thrive!
To help disadvantaged and special needs kids thrive by teaching core values through high quality martial arts mentorship. We will provide high-quality mentorship at scale, serving more kids, more quickly. Nearly half a million children in Metro Atlanta live in communities with low or very low child well-being. Mentorship programs work, but traditional mentorship models can only serve a fraction of the kids who need a hand up because one-to-one mentorship models are difficult to scale. We started PowerUP with 15 kids in 2017 to over 150 in 2021. We have strong demand from parents and partners and aim to serve 300 kids by the end of 2022.
We provided 2,500 hours of mentorship in 2021. Over 75% of those hours were held over Zoom to accommodate COVID-19 safety measures. 168 students applied for mentorship. Geographically, these students came from about a third of our target Metro Atlanta area. In 2022 we know that we can increase our staying power and have an even greater impact.
Our donors contributed:
Founded and Held First Class
Expanded to Two New Partners
90 New Applicants, COVID/Virtual Year
168 New Applicants, Raised $540k, Hired First Executive Director
Mentorship Goal: 300 Students
Mentorship Goal:1,000 Students
Mentorship Goal: 10,000 Students
2017Founded and Held First Class
2018Expanded to Two New Partners
202090 New Applicants, COVID/Virtual Year
2021168 New Applicants, Raised $540k, Hired First Executive Director
2022Mentorship Goal: 300 Students
2023Mentorship Goal:1,000 Students
2025Mentorship Goal: 10,000 Students
How You Can Help
Support PowerUP. With your donation, we can make the reality of mentoring 300 kids in 2022 possible.