Factory Underground and hip hop artist and Carver alumnus FNX most recently helped Carver participate in and succeed at the March 9, 2017 Fairfield County's Giving Day (front page story in The Hour here and Carver blog post here). Now they are planning the second annual Hometown Love event at the Carver Community Center for Saturday, May 20, 2017!
Why Hometown Love?
Of his original inspiration to launch Hometown Love at the George Washington Carver Community Center in Norwalk, CT in June 2016, (and here for another feature in The Hour) hip hop artist FNX's idea was to create a fun, interactive community-pride event, and to feed as many people as possible with a canned-food drive. Love of community is certainly reflected in the title of the event, named for one of his more personal songs. But the decision to raise food donations is where the story gets a little deeper.
"I honestly remember being homeless with my mother when I was a child, sleeping on the floor of a local church, subsisting on donated food from a local community center," he says. " Ever since then I've wanted to give back, and to help change things for the next child in that situation. To this day, one in six children in the state of Connecticut don't know where their next hot meal is coming from. No matter what happens in my music career, this is something I must address. I owe it to the people that helped me."
Setting a goal of 500 canned, or non-perishable food items, the event actually raised over 600 items that were donated to Person-to-Person Food Bank, also of Norwalk, CT. "We said 500 and we smashed the goal - this year we are going for 1000, " FNX says confidently.
Why the George Washington Carver Community Center? "Growing up in poverty as I did, a young black male and rapper from the projects--who was going to bet on me not joining a street gang, not getting into drugs, not going to jail, or dead in the street? Who was going to bet on me finishing high school, much less betting on me to get a dual Bachelors Degree in Business and Finance from the University of Southern Connecticut, and a Master's Degree in Organizational Leadership from the University of New Hampshire? No one but the Carver, and my mentor the late Mr Richard Fuller. I owe the Carver so much, and I am so proud to advocate for them today. The truth is I'm only one of a thousand success Carver success stories"
Hometown Love brings together the Norwalk music community, local artists and business leaders, to rally behind an important cause while encouraging good-neighbor
What is Hometown Love?
Two cans (minimum) of food is the only price of admission to what promises to be a fun-for-all ages, community event, including a 10-team, 5-on-5 basketball tournament, a barbecue cook out with tons of delicious food, a DJ to spin music, special musical guests and athletes, an inflatable bounce-house and face-painting for the kids. Hometown Love is open to the community, and expected to draw people throughout Norwalk. FNX will once again host the event, being produced by Norwalk's top recording studio Factory Underground, and co-sponsored by George Washington Carver Foundation. All food proceeds to go to local food banks including Person to Person.
Where is Hometown Love?
George Washington Carver Community Center, 7 Academy Street, Norwalk, CT 06850. Basketball tournament in the Carver gymnasium with special "Half Time" entertainment. Barbecue Cook Out, Bounce-House, face painting, and games for the kids outside on the Carver grounds.