On Saturday, June 21st, The Dollicia F. Holloway Memorial Foundation, Inc hosted their very first 8K Walk-A-Thon. The theme of the event was entitled “Walking Towards a Brighter Future.” The section set for the Walk-A-Thon had a few corporate sponsors, some volunteers and a great turn out of participants, both young and seasoned walkers, who were ready to make their mark by walking around the beautiful waterfront Long Island Park in Nassau County to help sponsor a college bound High School senior on her way to Rutgers University.
Ms. Rachel Johnson, 18, a high school graduate and valedictorian of her class at Abundant Life Academy, out of Nutley, New Jersey, was the very first recipient of the Foundation’s Youth Educational Initiative, The Hip Hop Movement 2014 Gold Merit Award. The award was created to allow the student’s community and various corporate sponsors to get involved with assisting college bound high school seniors to raise an unlimited amount of funds to offset their college expenses and also enable, equip and empower students once they graduated to encourage them to come back and enhance the community which assisted them in obtaining their college degrees.
Keith H. Burgess, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of The Dollicia F. Holloway Memorial Foundation, Inc and The Hip Hop Movement Community Enrichment and Economic Development Program, said, ““We’re always raising money to fight breast cancer, as well as raising money for diabetes and those causes are good. Our Foundation wanted to use a similar concept by calling on the community and corporate to help raise money and sponsor college bound high school seniors to offset their college expenses and as they fulfill their academic requirements, they will receive the greatest reward by furthering their education and becoming philanthropic to their community who supported them at the same time.”
Altanya Gerald-Burgess, The Chief Operations Officer of the foundation and Project Leader for the event stated, “The foundation wanted to create a merit award as opposed to creating just a scholarship, because with a scholarship, there are caps, such as $1,000, $2,500, $5,000, etc, but with a merit award, the opportunities of raising unlimited amount of funds, where a child could possibly receive enough monetary support to offset all four years worth of college expenses. The Hip Hop Movement Gold Merit Award was created to impact the community and create a legacy of hope and unlimited possibilities for future college students to obtain and achieve academic excellence as well as perform community service. Our tagline for the foundation is that we D.A.R.E. our youth to “Dream, Achieve, Rise and Explore.” Rachel said she felt very blessed and grateful to have been the recipient of such a prestigious award! She felt the 8K Walk-A-Thon was a huge success!” Moricka Burgess (no relation to the coordinators), Rachel’s Mom, said, “I want to thank The Dollicia F. Holloway Memorial Foundation for recognizing my daughter, Rachel. She aspires to help others through therapy and counseling by becoming a Clinical Psychologist. I’m excited to see all she will accomplish in the future.”
The Dollicia F. Holloway Memorial Foundation, Inc. were also pleased to recognize the great work of a few educators, community leaders and a pioneer from the Hip Hop Community at the 2014 8K Walk-A-Thon. The recipients of the 2014 Hip Hop Movement Community Service Awards and Certificates of Recognition for their contributions to education, health & wellness and economic empowerment were Councilwoman Dorothy L. Goosby of the Town of Hempstead, Mr. Ray S. Thomas, Deputy Director of Minority Health in Nassau County, Mr. Shango Blake, Educator/CEO, TRU S.K.O.O.L. Consulting, Ms. Roxanne Shante, Hip Hop Pioneer/Mentor, Mr. Craig Monteverde aka DJ Callie Ban, Educator/DJ, WBLS 107.5. Mr. Monteverde went on to say during the event, “This is just the beginning of bigger things to come! Great event as well as a great cause! I’m so humbled by being honored for my two life’s passions: Hip Hop and Education.”
Corporate Sponsors, such as Fidelis Care, Bethpage Federal Credit Union, Better Magazine, Health First, Modell’s Sporting Goods, Starbucks, BJ Wholesale Club, Shoprite and S.J. Edwards and Associates, as well as private community sponsors and donors loaned their support to the 8K Walk-A-Thon, which will be held annually by the Foundation’s Youth Educational Initiative, the Hip Hop Movement Community Enrichment and Economic Development Program. Burgess says, “My definition of HIP HOP has always been “Helping Individuals Prosper & Honoring Others Potential.” Moricka Burgess was so grateful for all of the kindness and opportunity extended to her daughter, she wanted to thanked the Hip Hop Movement for putting education at the forefront of all they do.