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  • Writer's pictureDave Picozzi

The Empowered Community Story: 'Empowering YOU'

Updated: Jan 22

I’m grateful for growing up in the 1960s as the world was going through social transformation and economic prosperity. My generation inherited a nation ripe with opportunities, a sense of optimism, and a spirit of adventure. As a child in New York City, I felt safe walking myself 1 ½ blocks to kindergarten. In my preteen years, my friends and I biked all over the neighborhood and played outside until it got dark without our parents knowing our whereabouts. We played sports and often had a full team ready to go just by running down the apartment building stairs and ringing doorbells along the way. Our unstructured playtime was the norm. We also hung out to listen to new music and enjoy board games in our friends' homes, where we were often invited to stay for dinner. It was a simpler time, less dominated by TV screens, no mobile phone distractions interfering as we created memories, and no constant barrage of social media pressures.

Growing into adulthood in the 1980s, I witnessed the dawn of technological advancements, yet remained grounded in the tangible world and enjoyed human connections and the wonders of nature. Critical thinking and intellectual curiosity prepared me for a world brimming with possibilities. I independently paid for my college tuition and housing costs by working while going to school. Upon graduation, the job market was rich. With hard work, coupled with networking, I enjoyed a fulfilling career and security with one company. The economy was fueled by innovation and growth, and the middle class, including minorities, were improving their situations.

In stark contrast, the current generation faces a world transformed, yet not always for the better. The pervasiveness of technology, while offering endless connections, has also created a world of isolation and distraction. The middle class is diminishing, social freedoms are regressing, and the nation is becoming more polarized. Furthermore, the economic landscape has shifted, with job opportunities becoming increasingly scarce and competitive. The rising cost of living, particularly in housing and education, casts a shadow over the future of young adults, hindering their ability to achieve financial stability and independence. They’ve also witnessed the 9-11 terrorist attack on our nation, mass school shootings, increased violence worldwide, impacts from climate change, normalization of fake news and misinformation, and a global COVID-19 pandemic furthering a decline in societies and economies. From these perspectives, today’s young adults are the first generation that is worse off than their parents.

Then it hit me, the current generation doesn’t know, and has never experienced, how good we had it. They think today’s chaos is normal and just the way life is.
The Empowered Community text logo with programs listed (Education, Health & Fitness, Economic Empowerment) in front of a blurred image of a community of people having a discussion in a living room

With this realization, I formed www.Empowered.Community, a nonprofit organization, to empower students, adults, families and small businesses throughout their communities. Our life-changing free programs are not merely imparting knowledge, but fostering resilience, adaptability, a sense of purpose and restoring optimism. We recognize the importance of face-to-face interactions and foster a sense of community and belonging. We have unstructured activities to unleash creativity, problem-solving abilities, and self-improvement. It’s a supportive environment where people can explore their passions, discover their talents, and develop the skills necessary to thrive in an ever-changing world. Our dedicated volunteers provide education, economic empowerment, culture & arts, and health & fitness programs. We're committed to fill social gaps caused by rising living costs, disruption of traditional job markets due to artificial intelligence technologies, and the erosion of real-world social connections.

Empowered Community programs are free and rejuvenated regularly to meet current needs:

  • Scholarship Certifications & Diplomas

  • Interviewing & Resume Writing

  • Networking & Sharing Your Story

  • AI Prompt Engineering

  • Critical Thinking vs. Misinformation

  • Mentor with Millionaires

  • Financial Literacy & Planning

  • Lower Your Taxes Legally (aka. keep your money)

  • Cut Your Costs

  • Small Business Mentorship

  • Driving Change with Car Donations

  • Get Fit & Healthy (hiking, biking, exercise, cooking, eating, exercise)

  • Culture (art, theater, foods, music, sports, tours)

A full program list is on our website.

In addition, we offer internships, real-world business experiences, mentoring, and opportunities for people to become civically engaged in their communities. This bridges the gap between education and employment, ensuring individuals are equipped with the skills and knowledge demanded by the modern workforce.

Empowered Community's mission is "Sparking Potential, Igniting Lives" to help individuals realize their full potential, positively impact their families, workplaces, and communities. This contributes to brighter futures and enables people to experience the prosperity of past generations. Through transformative programs, we empower communities to shape their destinies and become inspirations, mentors, and builders.


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