In the moment, what is the status of your dot? Is your dot active? Does your dot need a reboot?
Your dot is the blinking element on a blank page encouraging you to take action. It’s a subtle reminder that your future is up to you.
If you are near the end of your primary career or in retirement and unsure of your next step, Encore Cleveland can help you fill in the dot.
Encore Cleveland’s mission is to solve community challenges and fulfill unmet needs by channeling the time, energy and talents of experienced Clevelanders. The national movement was launched in Cleveland in 2013 by the Cleveland Foundation, which has made a $6.2 million investment to the program to date.
It helps to connect and fund a network of organizations to provide experienced Greater Clevelanders with an array of meaningful community opportunities. To date, 19,381 individuals have been served at 392 program sites. Encore Cleveland’s service hours total 176,756.
There are 13 participating nonprofit organizations in Encore Cleveland with adult participants from all socioeconomic and educational levels. The organizations are:
· Business Volunteers Unlimited
· Cuyahoga County Public Library
· Cleveland Leadership Center
· East End Neighborhood House
· Economic Community Development Institute
· Encore Staffing Network: VANTAGE Aging
· Fairhill Partners
· Greater Cleveland Neighborhood Centers Association
· Greater Cleveland Volunteers
· JumpStart Inc.
· Leadership Geauga County
· Manufacturing Works
· Teach for America
Whether you are looking to volunteer, receive compensation, offer specific knowledge or start your own business, Encore Cleveland can help guide you.
Take, for example, Annette Hollimon, the owner of Forever Phoenix Wellness Center in South Euclid. Hollimon, a holistic health practitioner, says her business increased by 25 percent with assistance from Encore Cleveland through the Economic Community Development Institute/Women in Business program. Hollimon learned new ways to expand her business by reaching out to senior citizen groups at community centers, holding outside workshops and offering new products.
“I was skeptical at first because I’ve been involved in other organizations and have been disappointed, but the first time I walked into the Women’s Business Center, I fell in love with the people there,” says Hollimon.
“A lot of people don’t understand what I do. But the people at WBC took the time to hear my voice so they could support me from my aspect of the business and not the aspect of the business they thought I should follow.”
Hollimon says she draws from her personal experience. In 1998, she was given three weeks to live. She was told by doctors to go home and get her affairs in order. Instead, Hollimon went to a holistic practitioner who helped her heal herself from the inside out — emotionally, mentally, physically and spiritually.
“I didn’t get involved with holistic health care as a career, I got involved to save my own life,” says Hollimon. “I want to give back what was given to me.”
Hollimon defined her dot and forged ahead with the help of Encore Cleveland.
“Our past is our past,” says Hollimon. “As long as we keep living in our past, we will never go forward. That’s why you have to stay on the dot and stay present. You have an opportunity to make a choice to change your future.”