Dear Champions for Change,
When we first arrived in Philadelphia, many deemed us as outsiders and newcomers, as a way to dismiss our vision for change. We were told countless times that we didn’t understand how Philadelphia operated, and we just needed to accept the status quo for our Clubs and our kids. This mantra of “that’s just the way it is” did not align with our understanding of Philadelphia’s legacy as the heart of a revolution more than 225 years ago. A legacy, that we soon learned, was deeply connected to our family roots; family roots that came to Philadelphia in 1680.
Rather than being newcomers in the city, our journey to Philadelphia reflected a return home. Soon after taking leadership of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Philadelphia in 2012, we learned that our ancestors first immigrated to this great city on the eve of the beginning of the revolution, seeking freedom and change. They saw Philadelphia as a place of opportunity, where they could become contributing members of society without fear of oppression or judgement. Today, more than 225 years later, this is the legacy we that we work to carry out every day at our Boys & Girls Clubs.
We want Philadelphia’s youth to see their city as a land of opportunity, resources, and freedom; to understand that they do not have to accept crumbling buildings or subpar educational opportunities because “that’s just the way it is.” We cannot thank you enough, our friends and supporters, for sharing our vision of hope and opportunity for Philadelphia’s kids and communities.
Thanks to all of your support, we are fulfilling Philadelphia’s legacy as a place where change can happen, leaders are nourished and encouraged, and dreams are possible. In the summer of 2019, we will unveil our fully renovated Northeast Frankford Club, which encapsulates our vision for Philadelphia’s youth and future. This legacy will inspire us as we fulfill our vision of making Bold Changes for Philadelphia’s kids.
In the best interest of the kids,
Lisabeth & Joseph Marziello
President-Chief Executive Officers