First things first, this inaugural installment of our monthly newsletter will be a bit longer than normal, because it is a review of our first year!
Break out your notebooks and pen, here is a brief history of how UpLyft Toledo was started: UpLyft, the idea, was born in November of 2017. Four gentlemen gathered together in a musky local business boardroom and began to pitch the idea to each other. It was after three meetings, the group filed for the State of Ohio Incorporation certificate, and March 1st, 2018 UpLyft Toledo was officially incorporated and, on the way to becoming a federally recognized non-profit charity.
By May, through good fortune and contacts, the first UpLyft Toledo event with the Toledo Mud Hens was in flight. A glove collection drive at Fifth-Third field – on a sunny Saturday afternoon. By July, we made our first substantial donation to the families and children of the East Toledo Family Center (Featured on BCSN).
In the summer of 2018, due to increasing outreach and demand – UpLyft Toledo began to identify and recruit top talent in the Toledo area. The team of four would rapidly grow to a team of seven, almost overnight. Even more so within the last two months, the core team of seven has since grown to ten dedicated folks working every single day to make a positive impact on Northwest Ohio children.
Perhaps the most exciting news though, was becoming a federally recognized 501(c)3 certified non- profit organization. After consulting local professionals for assistance and recognizing their services would be well-outside of our fiscal limitations – we hit the books! Our team authored and reviewed the documentation prior to submitting for approval. The approval letter we received from the IRS was a testament to our team, and that anything is possible if we collectively set and ran after our goals.
The team, you ask? Let me tell you about our team... We have: Nick Drown, Jake Diegel, and AndrewBrogan all of which currently attend Bowling Green State University. Bri Wielinski who specializes and luckily for us, majors in Marketing at THE Ohio State University. Brendan Kiser, and Joey Fritz who are graduating seniors from THE Maumee High School (Once a Panther, ALWAYS a Panther). And lastly: Alan Rombkowski, Adam Toth, Josh Payzant, and Bill Laranga the founding fathers of UpLyft Toledo.
To date, we have worked with over 30 local organizations, schools, and businesses over the past year. And to be frank, our community is ABSOLUTELY AMAZING. We are so thankful for everyone who has helped us get to where we are today, and we are looking forward to the future of UpLyft Toledo and helping the youth of Toledo in 2019 and beyond.