By Dylan Deprey
The Running Rebels Community Organization (RRCO) have been serving Milwaukee’s youth for over 37 years. The nonprofit community organization has been dedicated to developing the youth mentally, physically and spiritually through educational and recreational programs.
After almost four decades they have provided athletic programming, mentoring, job preparedness, higher education programs, violence-freezones and so much more.
Whether it’s nudging a teen away from drugs and gangs through basketball, or helping students prepare for college, the RRCO is ready to take on even more.
The RRCO announced the Capital Campaign toward its new Harambee community center (225 W. Capitol Dr.) on June 6, 2017. The new center will triple the RRCO operating space and include a gymnasium, cafeteria, catering kitchen, computer labs and offices for its 125-person staff.
The RRCO has Milwaukee Bucks Vice President of Player and Organizational Development Craig Robinson and Clifton Phelps, Vice President of Business Development at JCP Construction to lead its $4.1 million Full Circle capital campaign.
“The Milwaukee Bucks are huge advocates of mentoring and I’m honored to be working alongside Clifton on this important campaign,” said Robinson.
The capital campaign will support the purchase of the property, fund improvements to the original Fond du Lac Ave. community center, create a building reserve fund and provide resources to support programs for hundreds of additional youth and families each year.
The Milwaukee Bucks Foundation (MBF) awarded $100,000 towards the RRCO’s campaign during the announcement.
“Our organization has partnered with the Rebels on a wide variety of programs. When we’re with the Rebels, it’s apparent that the empowerment instilled in them is present. They show up and are fully engaged – whether for the Bucks ‘Own Your Future’ programs, ‘Take Your Mentee to Work Day,’ or ‘Mentoring Mondays’. Bucks legend Marques Johnson along with some of our current players and I have spent a good deal of time at the original location. This new facility will truly allow the Rebels to broaden and deepen their work in our community.”
Phelps was born and raised in Milwaukee, and said he was excited as an RRCO board member and longtime supporter to expand resources to Milwaukee’s youth.
“The new community center will increase the Running Rebels capacity to provide after school programs in art, music, academics and athletics,” said Phelps. “These programs empower our youth and set them up for success as adults.”