PHOTO BY HATTIE LYNCH- LUBY FOR SOUTH FLORIDA TIMES
West Palm Beach, Fla – It was a balmy winter night, but with cozy heaters blowing at the new Drive Shack Golf Entertainment Complex in West Palm Beach, bigwigs came out recently in full force to support “Suits for Seniors,” the ever-growing nonproﬁt that provides graduates with a free tailored suit at the end of their 8-week course. The event brought together supporters, friends, politicians, law enforcement and more for free golf games, free gourmet buffet and of course, “giving,” to the “Golf and Give” extravaganza and holiday gathering.
President, Founder and CEO of Suits for Seniors, Jervonte Edmonds, 28, was more than pleased. “It turned out great. So many of the leadership of Palm Beach County came out to support us. I’m more than pleased. It was a very diverse show of support.” In turn, Edmonds presented an array of awards to organizations and companies who have supported the charity during its four year existence.
Comcast, however, was the title sponsor of the event, which was a fundraiser for scholarships and an end of the year Holiday celebration as well. Attendees had access to Private Golf Bays, Unlimited Golf Balls, Unlimited Use of Drive Shack Games, Complimentary Drive Shack Golf Clubs, Open Bar, and delectable Buffet.
In a statement, Comcast, announced that as a company it is uniquely positioned to educate, entertain, and empower, and are committed to bringing together diverse communities and inspiring their customers, audiences, and employees to make a positive impact.
Telby Turner, sponsor and Financial Literacy partner from RBC Wealth Management (center), with Jervonte “Tae” Edmonds, founder, president and CEO of Suits for Seniors. PHOTOS BY HATTIE LYNCH- LUBY FOR SOUTH FLORIDA TIMES
They do this, it says, by focusing on three areas: Making a difference in the communities through volunteerism and leadership development;
Increasing technology access and expanding digital skills within our communities and leveraging their far-reaching storytelling platforms to educate audiences and ignite conversations about critical issues that shape the world.
Carla Roderick, Regional Director, External Affairs at Comcast, says they were excited to sponsor the “Suits” charity event. “Comcast is proud to be a sponsor of this event,” she said while accepting a plaque from the organization. “One of the ways Comcast is committed to making a difference in our communities is supporting workforce development programs. The organization’s focus on ﬁnancial literacy, life skills, leadership, college and career readiness for our young people is a real need, and Comcast is honored to be a part of it. Seeing the pride in the eyes of the young women and men in the program, and hearing success stories of those who have completed the program, is the cherry on top!” said Roderick.
Graduates like Wood C. Brutus and Fernando Azor, both 21, are among those the company wants to support. Both young men were on hand to mark the festive event. “This organization has helped me to understand what real life is all about…..to be a leader, a businessman, said Brutus. “When we receive help, we can help others and grow from our experience. This is an excellent program and my life has greatly beneﬁted from it,” said Brutus.
Azor said it also prepared him for the real world. “This program taught me how to get ready for life and for the real world. The ﬁnancial leadership (component) helped me a lot. The (free tailored suit) taught me how to present myself. I would recommend this to everyone,” said Azor who is now studying Dentistry at Palm Beach State College.
The Suits program teaches empowerment, leadership, ﬁnancial management, healthy lifestyles and image to male (and now female) graduating high school seniors and, upon successful program completion, provides each student with a tailored suit. Thus far, Edmonds says they have “suited” over 1000 graduates in their mere four-year existence. They have a 100% high school graduation rate and a 95% college entrance rate. They’ve also ventured South and suited the Senior Class State Football champions, Miami Northwestern High. He’s also hoping to expand beyond high schools and start a mentoring program with the Palm Beach County Library System in order to reach students in the community –not just at various high schools. They’ve also started a Capital Campaign to raise $1.2 million for a new building. They need a larger facility to house their program components and to expand their reach. “Our goal is to create a safe, supportive and sustainable learning and personal development culture for youth and disadvantaged people in our community,” said Edmonds.
The goal of the Golf and Give event was to not only raise needed funds to this high impact program but to also match students with potential mentors that could guide them through the next phase of life including starting their business or post-secondary education. Eric Kelly, CEO of the Quantum Foundation, said he was honored to be the ﬁrst organization to support the program in its inception. Many other dignitaries were on hand including government ofﬁcials, police chief of Palm Beach Gardens and numerous others who have supported the program in various ways. The attendees were recognized by Edmonds.
Edmonds says the organization is looking forward to a dynamic 2020 year, but could still use support to reach it’s goals to help senior males and females to get a great start in life. If anyone wishes to support Suits for Seniors, a 501c3 organization, please call Jervonte Edmonds at 321-604-7590.