About Us

OUR HISTORY

The Dukes Foundation (formerly The Dukes Make A Wish Reality Program) is a non-profit 501 C 3 organization founded in 2003, by Horace Dukes. This foundation was formed as a way of providing underprivileged, at-risk young men with haircuts, uniforms and cultural exposure. The program evolved far beyond his imagination to include more young men and in-kind services. The following are the purposes for which this organization has been organized; to provide the tools, opportunities, and support to help at-risk young men dream, achieve, and become healthy, successful adults. The organization will provide each at-risk young man with opportunities to reach his full potential through the organization’s vision of introducing the following nine (9) outcomes:

  • Enhancing Academic Attitude & Performance
  • Providing Peer & Adult Social Skills
  • Developing Lifelong Learners
  • Cultivating Personal Growth & Creativity
  • Providing at-risk Young Men with Leadership & Community Services
  • Nourishing a Healthy, Mental, and Physical State of Being
  • Financial Literacy Certification
  • Young CEO Institute Emerging Program
  • Cultural Exposure College Tours

Each program is in alignment with the purpose of the Dukes Foundation, which is to provide a vehicle for at-risk, low-income, unmotivated young men to drive past adverse circumstances to excellence; to provide mentorship for those students who are in need of guidance; to introduce young men to the fact that they are in control of their lives, their internal state of mind, and of what they give and accomplish in life; to grow and transform the resulting culture of excellence into a culture of outward altruism and internal growth; to resolve, find, and develop leaders today to problems of tomorrow; and to instill mindful living SELF (Serenity, Exercise, Love and Food).

THE MISSION

The mission of The Dukes Foundation is to “provide the tools, opportunities, and support to help at-risk young men dream, achieve, and become healthy, successful adults.” The Dukes Foundation provides each at-risk young man with opportunities to reach his full potential.

THE VISION

The vision of the Dukes Foundation is to develop and implement programs that will help young men in the metro Atlanta area realize their full potential by providing academic excellence, community volunteerism and cultural exposure.

MESSAGE FROM CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER

image004 It is my privilege to extend a warm welcome to you on this visit to The Dukes Foundation Website. Enjoy your tour and favor us with comment(s.) I crave for indulgence briefly in reflecting on reasons for my involvement in community service through the establishment and operation of this organization.

I am indebted to my Grandmother, Ms. Eola Dukes and The Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity for the inspiration to serve with the objective of improving the quality of life for my fellowmen, especially ones with limited opportunities.

As an Educator, I have amassed first-hand knowledge of the needs of students (children.) The conditions of their home(s) and the location of their neighborhood(s) contribute to the state of their mind(s) and self-esteem. With positive motivation they overcome the challenging socio-economic conditions that confront them daily without their choosing. This has sharpened my eyes in diagnosing problems and seeking solutions.

It was during my travels across Metro Atlanta in preparation to celebrate Christmas 2002 that the impact of hopelessness in some neighborhoods captured my attention. As I discussed the wishes of Christmas gifts with a few young men it moved me to get into action immediately to effect change that would result in their wishes being granted. This gave birth to a program called ‘Dukes Make a Wish Reality.’

I called on a couple friends for financial support, the response was overwhelming with the first donation of five hundred dollars. I immediately assembled several young men. We journeyed to buy (them) new clothes & shoes and get them haircuts. After achieving those goals I took them to lunch and dinner then onto a tour of some of Atlanta’s upper income areas (to inspire and motivate them into aiming for excellence.) The gratitude for their wishes being granted was reflected on their faces. To GOD be the glory!

The vision gave birth to The Dukes Foundation in 2003. After several years of conducting mentoring programs and assisting in grooming numerous young men for ‘Back to School’ and Holiday Seasons we obtained approval as a 501 ©(3) Non-Profit Organization in February 2009.

Through the generosity of numerous supporters we continue to expand our services into improving academic achievements, cultural awareness, mental & physical wellness and personal growth. This has resulted in extraordinary achievement in the CRCT Writing assessment examination by our mentees.

With continued support I pledge to intensify the positive impact of our programs in developing the future leaders of our society.