Daily Point of Light # 2626 Feb 27, 2004

For 15 years, Bemira Gates, an alumna of Clark Atlanta University, has contributed to campus and community organizations by bridging the gap in areas of unmet needs. Gates founded CUWIN (see you win), a nonprofit organization with the single mission of relating education to real life situations. CUWIN assists grassroots, faith-based and nonprofit agencies with serving disadvantaged neighborhoods. This is accomplished by building collaborative partnerships with national organizations. CUWIN promotes academic excellence through neighborhood volunteerism.

Some of the organizations that have partnered with CUWIN are First Book, Georgia Mentoring Partnership, Communities in Schools, Boys and Girls Club of Metro Atlanta and Sisters Motivating Achievement by Recognizing Talents (SMART).

Gates has helped build a powerful coalition of members of colleges and universities and nonprofit businesses to address unmet needs in areas of study. By educating communities with students of higher education, neighborhoods are able to create programs with committed volunteers. Gates has a tremendous commitment to recruiting volunteers to share their talents with the community at large.

Ms. Gates, an AmeriCorps alumni, has more than 10 years of community service experience in surrounding neighborhoods in Atlanta, Ga. Her accomplishments can be seen in a number of neighborhoods, Reynoldstown and Historic West End, to name a few.

While attending Frederick Douglass High School, Ms. Gates volunteered in the Reynoldstown community as their neighborhood journalist for several years. She introduced Reynoldstown to technology by constructing web pages and providing information to help low-income residents obtain home ownership. In 1998, she was able to provide funds to Reynoldstown through a community service grant given by AT&T. In 2002-03, Ms. Gates, 29, spearheaded the Historically Black College and Universities (HBCU) Technology Project. She coordinated volunteers at the Atlanta University Center, one of six sites throughout the United States participating in the program. Building a bridge through local community nonprofits, she created sustainable activities and collaborative economic efforts with other AmeriCorps projects.

Ms. Gates is continuing to help nonprofit organizations obtain funding and devise innovative projects. The digital divide is just one of the most sought after areas in which she serves. She has also dedicated her strength and talents in giving back to the community in the areas of education and social responsibility. She currently works with Hands on Atlanta’s Social Entrepreneurship Program and First Book’s Literacy Program, giving to impoverished minorities who have minimal access to educational materials.