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Amanda Belo is a communications professional living in Chicago by way of North Carolina (GO HEELS!). Her heart will always belong to the East Coast. In addition to being passionate about the arts, culture, travel, food, and social good, Amanda has always loved to write and tell compelling stories. Amanda finds something new about Chicago every day and she cannot wait to explore more about the city and Chicagoans as a writer for Miss A. She earned her bachelor's degree in dance, with a minor in communication studies from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, and her master's degree in public relations and advertising from DePaul University.

Hamburger Mary’s Comedy Show Raises Money For Project: VISION

Stir Friday Night (Photo credit: Victoria Ng)

Stir Friday Night (Photo credit: Victoria Ng)

Project: VISION hosted a comedy-themed fundraiser at Hamburger Mary’s on April 4, 2015. The event brought together supporters of the organization and helped to raise money for Project:VISION’s mission. Serving Chicago’s Bridgeport and Chinatown communities since 2003, Project: VISION provides area youth with tools for educational, personal, and civic development. Karen Chiu serves as Executive Director.

According to Project:VISION’s Associate Board Chair King Leung, the organization currently serves 115 students, and of those students, 85% are from low-income families, and 70% would be the first in their families to attend college.

Leung stated, “Oftentimes their parents are too busy making ends meet to be able to help with homework, or just not versed enough in advanced physics and calculus to help. For this underprivileged group, we provide completely free tutoring, college prep, and test prep services, in addition to volunteer and leadership opportunities.”

He added that 100% of their students are promoted to the next grade on time, 81% improve by at least one letter grade in a core class, and 100% of the high school seniors are accepted to and attend college.

“The progress everyone makes is incredible and really shows you how much these children are all capable of, as long as we put in the effort to help them.”

A-Squared Theatre Workshop (Photo credit: Victoria Ng)

A-Squared Theatre Workshop (Photo credit: Victoria Ng)

The comedy night featured performances from two Chicago performance organizations. Asian-American sketch comedy troupe Stir Friday Night started off the night with an improvised sketch set, similar to the Whose Line Is It Anyway? format in that they had prompts given to them by audience members. Following Stir Friday Night was A-Squared Theatre Workshop, a Chicago-based theatre company dedicated to telling stories about the Asian American experience. They took the stage with two different scenes, one of them with a secret spy premise.

Upcoming events this year include the Chinatown 5K in which Project: VISION will sponsor a team to run to raise money for the organization. Leung also said it is a way to help students work on fitness. Also in October, the organization will hold their annual Silent Auction Fundraiser.

“Not only is it a great cause to support, but it’s also been an incredibly rewarding experience to help out,” said Leung. It’s been awesome watching students I tutor every week get into great high schools and colleges, and it’s been terrific working with the staff and board of the organization.  There are smart, generous and fun people up and down the organization, and we’d love to share the joy and the cause with anyone out there who’s interested!”

For more information about Project: VISION visit www.projectvisionchicago.org.

 

 

 

A-Squared Theatre Workshop (Photo credit: Victoria Ng)

A-Squared Theatre Workshop (Photo credit: Victoria Ng)

(Photo credit: Victoria Ng)

Associate Board Chair King Leung (Photo credit: Victoria Ng)

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