As 2013 comes to an end, I want to say thank you.
We made big strides this year. Our video exposing the dangers of the Keystone XL pipeline went viral. Our successful "Gun Show Gallery" mobilized hundreds of artists against gun violence. And we finally got Bush-era Ed DeMarco fired as head of the Federal Housing Finance Agency.
None of that would have been possible without you.
Now we are preparing a bold game-changer for 2014.
I'm talking about #YesWeCode.
After the Trayvon Martin tragedy, we asked ourselves: Why do so many people see a black kid wearing a hoodie and think ‘thug’? And yet, when they see Mark Zuckerberg -- who wears hoodies all the time -- they think, ‘genius’?
We were forced to confront a deeper question: where are all the black (or Latino or Native American) Mark Zuckerbergs?
Though more people of color are entering the tech world, these numbers are not enough. So we decided to do something about it.
#YesWeCode is a major initiative to help train 100,000 low-opportunity youth to become the next generation of world-class computer programmers.
We've teamed up with dozens of allies, including tech visionaries, celebrities, community leaders and activists from all over the country. We've forged a partnership with Essence Magazine and music legend Prince. At the 20th Anniversary Essence Festival in New Orleans over 4th of July weekend, we will publicly launch #YesWeCode with a bang.
#YesWeCode has the potential to make a truly profound impact on the entire country -- but we need your help to make it happen. Your tax-deductible gift will go a long way.
Rebuild The Dream is uniquely positioned to multiply your gift's impact. We have a small staff and a lean budget. Our efforts are bolstered by more than 500,000 online members. We have the partners, plan and the visibility to succeed.
We just need the resources. We have set an immediate goal of raising $50,000 by the end of the year.
And come 2014, we’re ready to take on more challenges. All we need is you.
There's not much time left. Can you make a 100% tax-deductible gift now?
Thank you -- invest in our future now.
Van and the rest of the Rebuild the Dream team
P.S. Please note that Dec. 31 is the deadline to make year-end, tax-deductible gifts to your favorite change-making organizations.