MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - Thousands of Memphis teens found out Wednesday if they were accepted into the city's summer employment program.
MPLOY puts kids to work in paid internships, and while some will get the opportunity many will be turned away.
"Ladies and gentleman, if we don't help our children in our city who will,” asked Dr. Ike Griffith with the City’s Youth Services Department.
This year, more than 9,000 students applied, but only 2,000 will be selected -- meaning more than 7,000 applicants will be turned away.
Griffith doesn't want that to happen.
"I'm asking every concerned citizen in Memphis to donate $20 or more toward summer employment, “Griffith said.
“I'm asking every business and faith based community to donate $2,000 or more for summer employment."
On average it takes between $1,600 and $2,000 per child for six weeks during the summer.
“If we can just get another $200, another $500,” Griffith said. “That's a big help but we're still leaving a lot of children without an opportunity to work."
Jordaan Davis is one of the thousands of students who says she "hit the lottery" with her summer internship through MPLOY.
"When I got into MPLOY it changed my whole perspective on what I’m going to do with my life,” she said.
This summer Verizon donated $25,000 for summer jobs. Griffith is hoping other businesses will follow suit to give teens like Jordaan Davis a life changing experience.
St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, ALSAC, FedEx, Girls Inc., Baptist Memorial, Hattiloo Theatre and the City of Memphis are a few of the companies partnering with MPLOY this year.
The Memphis Office of Youth Services is making it easier for you to give to MPLOY through an initiative called JOY or "Just One Youth."
To donate, text JOY2020 to 91999.