To be the catalyst that will properly equip community members with an optimistic mindset, to be productive contributors to society.
Project Optimism Inc. is a (501c3) non-profit organization founded by Armoni Easley and Ishmael Pruitt. They see the community as a giant project. Their plan is to develop programs and services with the help of the community to meet community needs.
Both founders work as outreach advocates for K- College students; Armoni for the Equity & Student Achievement Department as well as the Family and Community
Engagement Department of San Juan Unified School District and Ishmael for the Division of Student Affairs at California State University, Long Beach.
In 2015 Armoni and Ishmael met through their work in counseling and mentoring foster youth at the Children’s Receiving Home of Sacramento. They connected through their personal and professional values, and realized they shared the same vision; to empower communities of color.
The organization is the direct response to the life experiences of each founder. Both are California
natives and during their own childhood they witnessed multiple individuals within their community and family fall to oppressive systematic forces; substance abuse, prison, poverty, and gangs.
Despite their environments, both kept in mind that there was more to life than their current options. And they moved forward with the idea to one day help and teach others how to move out of their inopportune and/or inherited circumstances and mindsets.
Project Optimism, Inc. has three main initiatives: