Tag Archives: Kevin Hershock

Memories That Last A Lifetime

20 Jan

The holidays are over, friends and family from miles away have all returned home, and we have a little time to rest. What better time, then, to reflect on all the things that make those people as special as they are to us? This season was among the most meaningful for us at Be a Number. After all the holiday parties, after the friends and the family were gone, and even before they arrived, we had a chance to share the joy of the Season of Giving with children in downtown Detroit, Michigan.

On December 24, 2010, we handed out 100 shirts to children at I Am My Brother’s Keeper Ministries, a ministry that had just suffered the sudden death of its leader, Pastor Henry Convington. His inspirational story is beautifully depicted in the book Have A Little Faith by Mitch Albom, and it is a story which absolutely inspired us to visit the ministry. This year, we learned the true meaning of the holiday season: to love, to give, and to cherish.

We saw the love the Pastor Covington had for those who only passed through the ministry, and also for more permanent members. We saw the love he had for the building itself, which has suffered many expensive damages over the years. Most of all, however, we saw the love he had for the children in the area. He set up family nights for children and their families to play games, enjoy a meal, and congregate. He made many sacrifices to help them, and took many under his wing.

We gave one hundred children a Be A Number t-shirt through the organization, but more importantly, we gave them our constant support and our hope for them to succeed in whatever vocation or goals they set for themselves. We gave them a few words that they can carry with them through good times and bad: keep working, never give up, and dreams really can (and do!) come true.

Finally, we learned to cherish. While each child we have seen over the course of the shirt drops has left an impression on us, with this particular one, we saw what it is like for us to make an impression on the children. We conducted the shirt drop within about two weeks of spending the night there, but only some of us were able to return. The kids, without missing a beat, immediately asked where the others were. Without hesitation, we called Matt, and put the kids on the phone with him so they could hear his voice and tell them what they had been up to since they saw him.

The smiles on their faces were some of the biggest we’ve seen. This was proof for them that we cherish the memories we have of them and we will always care for them. Matt instantly recognized their names and asked enthusiastic questions and was excited to hear from them. Just this simple phone call gave them the sound knowledge that they would never be forgotten. Not only do we cherish and truly care about the kids, they can cherish the message we shared because they had real, powerful proof that we would always remember them.

Below is the video of the shirt drop, we know you’ll enjoy watching it :)

Fans and Football

4 Sep

Here in Michigan, leaves are beginning to turn into beautiful reds and yellows, local school districts are getting ready to begin classes, and college students have enjoyed welcome weeks and their first football games of the season. Fall is a unique time of year across America, and millions look forward to hearing marching bands start their school’s fight song while watching dozens of players rush onto the field, excited and nervous for the first play of the game.

Kevin Hershock, our young founder, has enjoyed his playing time for years, but lately he’s been recognized for more than just his presence on the field. Tony Nicolette, a writer for D2football.com, recently wrote a great player profile of Kevin and Be A Number, highlighting both time on and off the field.  Nicolette’s interview with Kevin asks a question many people seem to have, how to balance everything from football to running a business and finishing college. The article even touches on upcoming news about the future of Be A Number.  To read the full article, click here.

Until next time, rest assured that we’re working hard and have big news coming up!

Go Hillsdale Chargers!

Nature’s Humility

28 Jul

Beautiful skies were just a small part of Mananagua's charm

The cruel irony of life often strikes when we least expect it. Mother Nature seems to have no regard for our plans, and whether we like it or not rain will come as quickly as sunshine and storms as easily as clear skies. Unpredictable in her beauty as equally as her wrath, Mother Nature will be a force to be reckoned with for the rest of time.

While in the Dominican Republic, sun was abundant and provided a brilliant contrast to rusted corrugated tin  roofs and dusty streets around the Mananagua area, which was the location of our biggest shirt drop yet. An artist’s dream, the scenery was beautiful in its own right, and the smiles of children and adults alike added a shining light to the sun’s rays that only pure happiness can.

After passing out 400 shirts to children in the Dominican, our team returned home tired after a long day of connecting flights, but forever changed. The families that welcomed them into their homes to learn about life in the Dominican demonstrated patience on all levels as Kevin and others did their best to use enough broken Spanish to speak with them. Incomparable friendships and bonds were formed among the people of Mananagua and our team, who helped construct homes and pass out Be A Number shirts to the children.

Kevin's mom pauses for a picture with an adorable little boy

It’s hard to describe, then, the sinking feeling that comes with hearing news that within days of our departure from the Dominican, flooding claimed its power over the town. While those we met were unharmed as far as we could tell, homes were flooded, thousands were evacuated, and water swelled waist-high. Particularly heartbreaking was watching video and images with children in Be A Number shirts in the background.  Though the experience in the Dominican had been such a positive one and our team returned with more confidence in our cause, nature was a step behind us with a reminder that we can never take things for granted and can never stop working for a better world.

Our thoughts and hearts go out to all our friends in the Dominican, as well as those we don’t know, who are working to keep their families safe and healthy, all the while finding shelter and putting their lives back together. We will do our best to update all of you on their progress as new information becomes available, but take a moment to think of them each day, and consider reaching out to them in your own way.

Breaking Borders

9 Jul

Today is a big day for us here at Be A Numberour founder, his mom, and 400 shirts are headed to Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic this morning. They’ll be working alongside members of Willow Creek church to build houses in the Santo Domingo area, and will be passing out shirts in their “down time.”

Kevin's mom is ready for the Dominican! Here she is on the plane just before take-off!

Our shirt drops began in March 2010, and since then, we have had the opportunity to hand-deliver shirts to elementary students in Pine Ridge, South Dakota, children disabled from Pallister-Killian Syndrome, and now we’re crossing international borders to help children in the Dominican.

It’s incredible what an idea in the middle of the night not quite a year ago has led to. The friendships forged and the connections made have been humbling to all of us, but nothing compares to the children we’re lucky enough to meet and spend time with. They have been a constant source of motivation, inspiration, and most importantly, dreams. They constantly show us what it truly means to dream. As they explore the world around them and encounter all new experiences each day, the children we work for have shared their ideas and goals with us, and we couldn’t be more proud of each of them.

So, as we wait anxiously for updates and photos from the Dominican, those of us back here in the States will be working hard to keep spreading the word about our worldwide (!!) movement to give children hope and help them keep dreaming while they teach us to do the same.

Want to help spread the word? Share a link to the blog, Facebook page, and Twitter, or even the website with friends and family :)

Also, follow our new LinkedIn account!

Big Changes

30 Jun

There has been a lot of activity here lately! Over the last few weeks, we’ve been working hard on a new look for the website, and we’re proud to announce that it’s finally ready! So what will you find?  Here’s just a taste:

  • New photos under the Places & Faces tab show where we’ve been and where we’re headed next!
  • Are you a number? Find out where your matching shirt has gone or will be going by entering your number in the search box on the top right
  • Find out more information about the places we’ve gone by clicking on the location on the Places & Faces tab–and check out the photo galleries at the bottom of each location page.
  • Check out the Get Involved tab for ways to join our movement or apply to be a campus representative!
  • The new Shop page makes it easier than ever to become another (or another number!)
  • Read the summary about what we do on the About Us page for an inside look at Be A Number.

Click around, check it out, and enjoy!

Soon, we’ll be announcing some exciting new changes to more than just the website, so stay tuned! Here’s a little hint: if you haven’t gotten a shirt yet, now’s the time–there are only a limited number of these styles left!

The blog, Facebook fan page and Twitter are becoming more and more popular, so join in if you have an account! Connect with our founder, Kevin Hershock, on his blog, FacebookTwitter, and LinkedIn too!

What will we be up to next? Only time will tell! We can’t wait to keep growing and connecting people from all over the world!

“We count numbers, we count on people, but what really counts is when we use our numbers to take into account, our people.” – Chip Conley
Be someone to count on. Be A Number.

Meet Us

2 Jun

It seems an appropriate way to begin our nation and world-wide journey to change the lives of kids everywhere…with a brief introduction of the people that keep Be A Number working!

First and foremost, our Founder and President,
Kevin Hershock. Always thinking, he’s constantly coming up with new, exciting ways to make Be A Number grow and help as many kids as possible. Family is very important to him, and his little sister Abbie is his biggest fan.

Our resident techie, Alex Vanston has been incredible as we constantly keep him on his toes with new website design ideas, hundreds of questions, and off-the-wall design requests. Even though he spends a lot of time working at the local hospital, he’s always got time for friends!

Then there’s me- Liz. I hold down the fort while Kevin does the talking and makes connections with important people all over the country-and even the world! I work with all of our student representatives to help them spread the word on their campuses and, over the course of the last few months, have made best friends with the printer and paper cutter.

We have over 40 campus representatives that are a major part of the Be A Number movement. They’ve held fundraisers, sold shirts, passed out flyers, and sported their shirts all over their campuses. We’re constantly looking for more representatives, so consider
joining the movement!

Out of all these people, though, one more group is the most important of all: you. Each person who spreads the word, purchases a shirt, tells others, or does all three is a VITAL part of making this work. With your help, this world is well on it’s way to being a better place. More importantly, children all over will know what it feels like to have hope and the knowledge that someone cares.

So, since you are all such a big part of this movement, follow the blog, comment, and tell us a little bit about yourselves- we can’t wait to see where this goes with your help :)

Until next time,
Be someone to count on. Be A Number.