Hello SSYO Family.
I hope this message finds all of you in high spirits and good health. As I look around the world today, I feel all of the tension and conflict that affects us all. Yet I’ve been reminded daily of all that we have to be grateful for.
Throughout this global pandemic, we as an SSYO Family have pulled together like never before. And together, we’ve helped meet the needs of numerous families/households. Thanks to all of your generosity, we managed to hold onto all of our salaried staff members during a time where millions of people were being furloughed or laid off. In return, each of our staff made financial contributions back into the mission here at SSYO in order to weather the financial storm.
On top of all of that, we see our country working through serious racial tension and unrest. Yet here stands SSYO. A small but powerful beacon of light in Corvallis, that is made up of such a beautiful collection of diverse staff, volunteers, board members, and students. We’re honored to be one of the very few (less than 50) Oregon nonprofits (out of the 990 or so that exist) that is led by a person of color. We’re also honored to have a Director for our excellent RISE Summer School program, which is an incredibly gifted educator that happens to be an African-American. Beyond that, we have a number of Summer School staff members that are part of our wonderful Latino community. And, as most of you already know, our students come from all types of different ethnic backgrounds.
So despite all of the challenges going on right now in the world, I’m exceedingly grateful. I’m grateful to still have a job. I’m grateful that my wife and 2-year-old daughter are healthy. I’m grateful for the priceless team that’s been assembled at SSYO. I’m grateful for all of you that believe in the mission of building strong, young lives. And I’m grateful that we’re able to continue loving and serving the youth of our beautiful city however we can. And I’m grateful for the things to come- that allow us to keep shining light and love into the world along with the rest of our Multicultural Precious SSYO Family.
Thank you all from the bottom of my big Samoan heart. Much love and God bless you all.
Liavaa “Jake” Moevao