CLEVELAND — Believe in Dreams is a small organization with just four people on staff, but they have been making big dreams a reality for young people living in the greater Cleveland-area since 2014.
Michelle Bailin, who is the chief fundraiser for Believe in Dreams, said thanks to community generosity last month marked the 300th dream fulfilled.
“Our 300th dream was a young man who wanted to learn how to glass blow, and wanted to learn about coding, so just something interesting for his future,” Bailin said.
Believe in Dreams supports dreams of all types, whether it’s an experience like attending a Cleveland Browns or Cleveland Cavaliers game or an item.
Bailin says the organization focuses on making dreams come true for children who have experienced a non-medical trauma such as abuse, extreme poverty, or having an incarcerated parent.
“Seventy of our kids have experienced at least two or more of these traumas. One in six of our kids ask for a bed and 50% of our kids currently do not live with their parents. And 80% of them live in families that make less than $30,000 a year,” Bailin said.
“We've gotten a lot of requests for tablets computers,” she said.
The organization is on target to achieve 90 dreams this year and have hopes to fulfill 100 in 2021.
Bailin says no matter how big or small, the experiences and items dreamers receive make a lasting impact.
“We don't hold their hand through it, we give them something. And we kind of let them go, empower them to fulfill that experience. We're empowering these kids to know that not only do people believe in them and support them, but they believe in themselves,” she said.
Believe in Dreams officials say there are countless children in line to fulfill their dreams. More information on the organization can be found on the Spectrum News 1 app.