Rotary Happenings: Rotarians hear about Quality Life Center in Fort Myers
Honesty, integrity, discipline, the pursuit of excellence, personal and community responsibility, faith, hope, cultural awareness and appreciation, strong family values and a holistic approach to health – these are the values we would love to be instilled in all people, especially our children. At the Quality Life Center of Southwest Florida in the heart of Fort Myers, this is happening on a daily basis.
The Rotary Club of Sanibel-Captiva recently heard from Abdul’Haq Muhammed, founder and executive director of the center, a man of small stature with a huge heart. He shared with us the incredible work he and his team are doing for the children of Fort Myers. The center is a nonprofit organization that renovated a former night club, a location well known by the Fort Myers police for violent crimes. It is now a safe place of hope, love and learning for the at-risk youth in the surrounding neighborhoods with the vision of “strengthening and instilling pride in family and community through programs and services that cultivate discipline, self-development, confidence and cultural awareness.” The children are offered an after-school program focusing in ACE (Arts, Character and Education) with a tutoring program, a teen program and LITE (Leaders in Training for Excellence), summer camps, and an arts program teaching both visual and performing arts. They offer on-site therapeutic services to address issues such as anxiety and high stress levels, anger and depression caused by societal and environmental factors. They teach meditation to the children as a means of emotional regulation skills, reduce stress and anxiety, create inner peace and calm in a very chaotic world.
In addition to the programs offered to the children, they are fed a hot dinner year-round as well as a lunch during the summer camps. Within the new addition on their building, they have room for catering events at the center. The events are catered by the youth at the center with an on-site chef. The center has created the Q Pizza Cafe, offering job training and employment to the youth in the program as well as providing a delivery pizza service to the surrounding neighborhood.
The center, at 3210 Dr. Martin Luther King Blvd., Fort Myers, always welcomes volunteers and donations. For more information, visit ww.qualitylifecenter.org or call 239-334-2797.
For information about the Rotary Club of Sanibel-Captiva, visit sanibelrotary.org or www.facebook.com/sancaprotary. The club meets every Friday at 7 a.m. at the Dunes Golf and Tennis Club, at 949 Sand Castle Road, Sanibel; visitors are welcome to attend.