Based on Dontae’s own experiences in foster care, he became fully aware of the inadequacies of the foster care system, and soon became an advocate for changing the same system he was a part of. He became involved in foster youth advocacy and quickly started making a name for himself. Several local non-profits that served foster youth and provided services to Dontae, noticed his commitment to betterment and began to use his story successfully as a focal point of their respective fundraising campaigns to improve foster youth outcomes. His story was powerful, and further, testified to the significance and long term impact of positive, nurturing and permanent relationships in the lives of foster youth. He came up with the name Razing the Bar because he wanted to fundamentally rebuild, from a systems standpoint, how agencies serve under-resourced youth populations.
Dontae reached out to one of his mentors, Ty Thompson to begin working on a program model and exploring opportunities.
Dontae and Ty come up with the name “Razing the Bar” and begin exploring nonprofit status.
Razing the Bar (RTB) partnered with a local real estate investor who was willing to support our efforts by providing reduced rent to house homeless youth.
Razing the Bar secures first property, a house in San Jose, providing housing and mentorship to 6 youths.
Raising the Bar becomes a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization.
Razing the Bar secures second property, an apartment in San Jose, providing housing and mentorship to 1 more youth and her child.
Post assessment: 100% of initial cohort made significant gains in earnings (averaging over 30%), and more importantly, displayed signs of increased self-esteem (as assessed by the Rosenberg model).
Received grant from Comerica Bank for $5K.
Received grant from Santa Clara County for $350K.