Always remembering the helpfulness of others during his youth, Pensacola native Grover Fields knows the importance of reaching back to help those in the community he grew up in.
Long removed from his basketball days at Lincoln Park, the founder and president of HBCU Information Network partnered with Cox Cable to provide Pensacola’s youth with giveaways, food and fun during this year’s, “Annual Summer Bash.”
HBCUin is a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation aimed at educating high school students on attending Historically Black Colleges and Universities as well as their ongoing purpose within the community and continual economic impact of their student body, both past and present.
The festivities kicked off last Friday, July 20, at Wing King with Fields hosting a “cash mob,” which he said was somewhat similar to that of a flash mob. A cash mob, Fields said, is where individuals are invited to “flood” a business with support – and last Friday at Wing King – a flood was exactly what owner Mickey Wade experienced.
“They flooded me alright…and killed me,” Wade said with a laugh. Wade who grew up in the same area as Fields said it’s wonderful when people give back to the community they grew in.
“It’s good that he came back because it shows that he didn’t forget how hard it was for him growing up – and how hard it can be for children who still live where he came from,” Wade said. “Fields coming back gives them inspiration and hope that maybe one day, they can be the ones giving back.”
On Saturday afternoon, Fields held a book-bag drive at Wedgewood Park where over 200 book-bags were given away.
“We are looking forward to providing students in the Escambia County Public School System with the essential tools they need to again succeed in the classroom,” Fields said referring to the goal for Saturday’s event.
Notebook paper, pens and pencils, binders and folders, calculators, compasses and protractors were given to older students.
Belinda Jones, who attended the book-bag giveaway and knows Fields personally, said she believed what he was doing would make a lasting impression on the children.
“Just like he remembers the people who helped him and gave him extra encouragement when he was younger, these children will be able to look back on this and remember what he did for them,” Jones said. “We can’t forget where we come from.”
The summer bash concluded Sunday evening at the Dreamland skating rink for a four hour skate jam with music provided by DJ Starz.
Fields says this year’s summer bash is not all he has in the works for his hometown –
he plans to initiate a HBCU college tour in Pensacola during May 2013.
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