At the last event Emmanuel House held as Emmanuel House—an April 2018 Gala at Aquaviva Winery—my son Rick Guzman gave what I thought was his best speech ever. In 2016 Emmanuel House was named one of the “Top 100 Most Innovative” social change organizations in the world. “I’ve often wondered why our small organization was chosen,” Rick said. “I think,” he continued, “that it was more than just having a good program. It was because we had this unshakable belief that every man, woman, and family had something to contribute to their community.”
Now, of course, Emmanuel House has become The Neighbor Project after merging with its long-time partner The Joseph Corporation, but this belief that every man, woman, child, and family has something to contribute remains central. The VIDEO BELOW shows a couple of minutes from our “big reveal,” a May 15th event held at Aurora’s Paramount Theater, where the formal announcement of the merger and the new Neighbor Project name was announced.
When it came time for Rick to speak, he opened by reasserting, again, that everyone can contribute—everyone has a right to contribute. “We ignore the promise and potential of our neighbors at our own peril,” he said, articulating an idea that applies broadly to so many situations in our world today. “When our neighbors prosper, so do we…Economists speak about ‘Inclusive Growth,’ and Sociologists speak about about interdependence instead of independence.” He concluded by saying that at The Neighbor Project a “shared destiny is foundational to our approach and central to our identity.”
♦ After watching the video below, watch a video introducing The Neighbor Project.
♦ Go to the old Emmanuel House website to learn more about how its home ownership program works, a program which will remain central to The Neighbor Project. And go to the Emmanuel House main page on this site, where the history of that organization continues to be kept and added to.