October 2012 Newsletter

Dear Friends,

All of us here at the Fund are pleased to report the successful completion of the first-ever Hope Reichbach Memorial Fund summer internship program!

Intern Ben Joson knocked on dozens of doors in East New York on behalf of VOCAL-NY, seeking signatures to end the NYPD’s “stop-and-frisk” policy. Ariel Estrella wrote about hundreds of public mural projects for Groundswell, the youth arts organization for which she interned. As part of her internship with Brooklyn Defender Services, Brenda Grande shadowed attorneys in the courtroom during arraignments and sentencing hearings, an experience that affirmed her aspirations of becoming an immigration lawyer. Nia Gumbs worked in the classroom at The HOPE Program, a nonprofit job readiness program, helping its students learn the skills they needed to find a job. Colleen Mims’ helped coordinate a major event for the Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Corporation, a community development organization that partners with residents and businesses to improve the quality of life of Central Brooklyn.

From left to right: Ben Joson, Brenda Grande, Council Speaker Christine Quinn, Ariel Estrella, Councilmember Steve Levin, Nia Gumbs, and Colleen Mims. Photo by: William Alatriste.

In addition to their internship placements, Hope Fund recipients participated in seven professional and personal development programs, including: an introduction to city government with Councilmember Stephen Levin at City Hall, a social-impact career workshop at Echoing Green, and a dinner with local arts activists.

In August, the Hope Fund interns wrote letters to the next round of recipients, reflecting on their memorable summers and telling future interns what to expect. Nia wrote, “Working for the HOPE Program is so far one of the best things I have ever done…For a first internship, I can say that what I learned and took from the program will be valuable for the rest of my life.”

Interns also acknowledged the increasingly rare opportunity to have a paid internship. In Ariel’s words: “Out of everything I have learned through my time as part of the Hope Fund, what has truly made an impact on me is the realization that paid internships are vital to community empowerment.

One theme that came up repeatedly in the interns’ reflections was the idea of the Hope Fund as more than simply an internship program. As Colleen put it, “Everyone in the Hope Fund is a part of my newly extended family.”

Join Us: Gus and Hope Reichbach Memorial Fund Fall Benefit Concert

On Sunday, November 18th at 3 PM the Brooklyn Friends of Chamber Music and the Brooklyn Symphony Orchestra will be holding a benefit concert for the Hope Fund. The program is dedicated to the memory of Hope and her late father, the Hon. Gus Reichbach. The performance will include Mendelssohn’s Octet in E-flat major, Opus 20, and Beavers’s concerto for violin, narrator and orchestra. The performance of Beaver’s concerto will be especially meaningful, as Gus had planned to narrate the piece in his daughter’s honor, before losing his battle with pancreatic cancer in July. Our good friend and wonderful actor, Harris Yulin, will be standing in for Gus as the narrator of the Beaver’s piece.

All proceeds will go to the Hope Reichbach Memorial Fund. The concert will be held at the Church of St. Ann and the Holy Trinity in Brooklyn Heights (157 Montague Street). Tickets are twenty dollars at the door. For more information, call (718) 855-3053 or (347) 915-5141.

Looking Ahead

Save the date and start your training! After a successful summer, we can’t stop now—we need to continue to offer more young adults transformative internship experiences. Stay tuned for information about our 5K walk/run on April 28th, to help raise money for future classes of interns.

If you’re unable to make it to the concert or the run/walk, you can still contribute to the Hope Fund. We rely on your donations to support Hope’s legacy. You can donate online or send a check made out to the Brooklyn Community Foundation (please note the Hope Reichbach Memorial Fund in the memo):

Brooklyn Community Foundation / Hope Reichbach Fund
Attn: Development Office
45 Main Street, Suite 409
Brooklyn NY 11201

All donations are tax deductible.

We look forward to continuing to work together with you, providing hope for Brooklyn.