STL | LIFT
Founded in 2015, STL|LIFT exists to upLIFT and empower inner-city youth to reach their fullest potential and become leaders of their communities through mentorship, education and transformational experiences.
We believe that by leading our students through developing life skills, providing them with countless resources and showing them an abundance of love, negative trends of gang violence, drug abuse and other destructive paths can be a thing of the past.
During the summer, STL|LIFT students have the opportunity to participate in one of many paid enrichments. Some of these enrichments include gardening, woodworking, landscaping, and working with small engines. We even have a group of entrepreneurial students who created a pop-up farmer's market in 2019!
About twice a month, we take our students on empowered experiences. We do fun outings to places like Cardinals games, camping trips, fishing, hiking, and retreats in different states. We also value educational empowered experiences to different corporations, businesses to broaden their horizons and help them develop soft skills, people skills and communication skills.
From negative statistics to college graduates, we are seeing our students see hope in their futures and become leaders of their communities.
STL | LINK
STL LINK’s formation has been continuous since 2018 when we began to connect our students and neighbors to jobs in the St. Louis region. STL LINK exists to connect North St. Louis neighbors to career opportunities.
We have a passion and desire to see North St. Louis residents flourish in ways that have never happened historically. We believe that this foundation of opportunity is created by our people continuing to understand who they are and what they’re capable of.
Specifically, we work with ages 18 years and above. Our apprentices walk through an individualized curriculum that allows them to grow at their own pace. Our goal is to see each apprentice be ready for a career not just “getting a job.”
Our apprentices meet weekly with the leadership team of LINK throughout the year. We are constantly looking for new neighbors who desire this pathway. We are also always looking for business owners who are ready to hire from the North St. Louis area.
STL | LIVE
In 2019 we launched a brand new initiative called STL LIVE. This new endeavor has been one of our most exciting projects to date and is still growing and being formed. Our goal for this program is to raise up pillars and solidify pillars of relationship throughout the North City area. Practically this means that LOVEtheLOU will strategically identify vacant houses that need to be restored. We will invite volunteer groups down to rehab them and will identify a North City family to make it their home. Our goal is for these families to enter into a rent to own agreement. Many of these families will be first time home owners.
It is our goal to see existing neighbors be the catalyst for change in St. Louis. By creating equity with these families we are able to allow home ownership to drive relationships. In 2019, Grace Church helped us begin this program by helping us purchase and rehab our first property on Enright Ave. After a year’s work Tawana Lawson and her family moved in. She immediately began the process of serving others and taking care of those around her. We believe that this formula of neighbors taking ownership will be the key to taking ownership in the city.