Each year, the Los Angeles office of Step Up Women’s Network hosts the Inspiration Awards: a red carpet luncheon for influencers to gather and celebrate Step Up’s charitable programs that benefit girls like me. This year, my classmate and Step Up sister Lulu and I got to tell our story and were each awarded a $5,000 scholarship from Step Up and the Gillette Venus Goddess Fund for Education. But it gets even better! The Container Store surprised each of us with a $500 Gift Card AND a complete dorm room set up!
Going through high school, and talking about college I always dreamed about the classes, meeting new people, and having my dorm set up like a magazine photo shoot. In reality, during my senior year, I lived in 5 – 6 different places, with different people, sleeping on their floors or couches since I had no home of my own. My family has been homeless several times throughout my high school career and not knowing where I was going to sleep at night was what I came to expect. This gift from The Container Store means so much to me. I finally get to have a stable place, that is decorated, organized, and that I can call my own. It’s a home away from home, and it all belongs to me.
I often ask myself, “Why me?” At the Inspiration Awards, my question was answered with another question, “Why not you?” Thank you to the Container Store for helping me start this new life.
— Kalen Isreal, California State University – East Bay