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Portsmouth nonprofit using social media to help young people during pandemic

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Posted at 9:48 PM, Jun 17, 2020
and last updated 2020-06-17 23:07:01-04

PORTSMOUTH, Va. - The COVID-19 pandemic has been a burden for many families.

Nu-Phazes, a small nonprofit based in Portsmouth, is using creative ways to help families, especially children.

“We've helped many different youths in different ways,” Founder and Director Cheryll Trower said.

Since 2012, the nonprofit has helped bring activities and educational programs to young people throughout Hampton Roads.

“We took a group of boys to Washington D.C. to see the different monuments [and] to the Smithsonian,” Executive Educational Director and Co-Founder Ashley Brown said. “We just really want to bring something different, as far as not just strictly a tutoring program, and not just strictly you go and just play.”

They went to social media after the start of the pandemic.

“A lot of everybody is home, so let's use what they're using,” Brown said.

With help from fundraisers, they launched social media contests where families can win gift cards, with values ranging from $10 to $200.

“Because we are in this pandemic, and we know a lot of parents are not working,” Trower said. “This is a safe way for the organization to network with the community and let them know that we're here as well.”

They've also created online platforms, giving young people a chance to express themselves through art and writing.

Related: Norfolk man turns his life around to help at-risk youth through K.I.N.D.

“A lot of them have that built of frustration, and we thought this would be a great outlet for them to still voice how they're feeling, to express themselves through whatever type of talent they have,” Brown said.

For Brown and Trower, positivity is key. They hope these campaigns will help many young people in Hampton Roads.

“You never know what you may say or do might bring a light to someone else,” Trower said.

If you’d like to help get involved, you can contact Nu-Phazes by visiting their website.

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