The Vision, The Dream, and The Goal
Greetings to my community family and friends,
Let me start by saying, Almeta would be so proud of how far we have come! I am tremendously excited to be able to carry on the legacy of my late Godmother! This organization is long overdue in this community and we have finally reached a point where we can take our momma's vision and dream for Columbia to a whole new level, but we still have a little ways to go.
When I first started to visualize ACCP as an organization, I saw it as one that could set the tone for building the foundation and structure to bring the community closer together. We choose the path of teaching a man how to fish so that, as the bible says, he can later know how to provide. This is our mission and vision, to teach those who are in need the proper life skills to be successful, and in the midst of our giving and learning, our fellow community members can understand how to do for themselves.
I look at this community today and I know that a change needs to happen! There is so much foolishness among the youth in this community with the drugs and the gun violence. When I ask what we are missing, I always come to the same conclusion…Almeta! She was the protector and the mother of the inner city community in Columbia. What's more, is she did her part to better the lives of those outside the First Ward also. We want to make a difference in this community as if our mother was still here! Almeta would go and sit in Douglas Park every day! She would dare anyone to start something while she was keeping watch! That is the type of diligence and faith that we need in our community. We are here to show the people and the families in Columbia that we are ready to walk the walk and talk the talk, but to do that we need the help and support of everyone that is proud enough to count themselves as a part of this community family!
Myself and the ACCP team have taken the mantle of Ms. Almeta and have vowed to continue her legacy! Almeta gave everything she had and more to make sure that those in her community were well taken care of. She did this because she once was one that needed that help and Columbia was there for her. As the leader of this organization, my personal commitment is to make sure that we remain an organization that is willing and able to help ALL in need in our community. We have committed to crossing racial boundaries, social boundaries, and all other boundaries that separate our community, because the belief that we thrive on is that of our founder; "together we are able, and divided we will crumble!"
ACCP is not what you are about, but WHO YOU ARE! We can all make a difference if we only commit to the time and effort it requires. We have to get our young people off of the street! We have to provide jobs and education to our youth that doesn't point them toward a life of crime and, ultimately, prison or worse! It takes a village to raise these young people and we must secure our future, because that’s exactly what they are to us, in every generation!
My Godmother once said to me, "Kentrell, we have to get this town in order!" and that is our mission and my personal goal. Understanding, discipline, and social justice are the key focus of ACCP because that is Almeta's vision and dream for the city and the people that she loved so much. It is my hope that all of Columbia will one day share in the love that Almeta had for this community so that we may continue to grow and carry on in her legacy!
God bless you all and never forget that you too, and even you alone, can make a difference!
President & CEO, ACCP, Inc.
This video is courtesy of an interview conducted with Kentrell at the 20th Annual Everybody Eats Community Thanksgiving Dinner in 2017.