Number of millionaires in Orange County, California: 116,000
Number of kids experiencing homelessness every year in Orange County: 22,000+
Five years ago I began working with kids in the community I grew up in, Orange County. Soon after learning about this issue and meeting some of the teens experiencing homelessness, I decided to dedicate my time and energy to support them. If we expect to create a prosperous America, it is vital to support the kids who have fallen through the cracks. There is no question that having mentors and positive role models in our lives is key to our development as humans and as a society. It is my goal to work with individuals and organizations who are part of this positive solution.
In 2012, three organizations partnered to give five Orange County foster and homeless youth the opportunity to pursue their musical dreams. The program was a collaboration between the Gen Why Project, which raises awareness for homeless and foster youth in America, the CUT Studios Foundation, which provides musical opportunities based on academic achievement, and GROW, an Awareness Agency that supports non-profits through philanthropy and film.
The program began with an "America Idol" style audition where five chosen youth in Orange County, had to audition and prove their commitment to be part of the six month program. This story of music and mentorship is highlighted in a feature documentary, the CUT, which will be released in 2013. The film highlights the journey of the chosen kids as they attempt to positively change their lives through their passion for music and dedication to overcome their past struggles. Along with music and vocal lessons, the program taught the kids about music technology, song writing and music business, with a final reward of recording an original song in a professional studio.
In this video, Alice, Hunter and Hope go to 17th Street Studios in Costa Mesa, California where they lay down their original song.