Club focuses on entrepreneurship and being neighborly
CLIO — After seeing all of the different school shootings and negative behavior from people, Eva Chiphe had an idea.
She wanted to create a club that stressed love and kindness to others.
“I think what is missing is that people don’t love one another,” she said.
“And to choose love in any situation,”Chiphe said. “Choose love instead of fighting or saying words that will upset someone else.”
From there the idea grew into the I Love You Club, designed to help youth in grades third and up.
The focus also stemmed from her book, When Love Walked The Earth. The book focuses on love and explores a father’s and mother’s love for their son and the mother’s miraculous power to save their family in the world of ancient Egypt.
Chiphe wanted to extend the love in the title of her book.
I Love You Club started last year in February at Clio Elementary, with the group meeting every Monday and Wednesday. Activities focus on entrepreneurship, career development, writing, publishing, and leadership skills.
One of the signature activities is the Shark Tank competition with students completing a business plan. This plan was then presented to a panel of judges, parents and community members.
For this school year, 28 students are working on two entrepreneur projects. The first one will have students writing a book as a group. The second project will have them working as individuals or with partners to create business plans.
Chiphe said it will be up to them to select their type of business.
Last year, some of the business plans included a community kitchen concept to provide food for the needy, tutoring, party planner and creating customized designs on tennis shoes.
Chiphe hopes students will leave with the spirit of love, being neighborly and choosing love over negative attitudes and actions.
“Also, I want them being able to start businesses to help themselves and to help develop their communities,” she said. “It is a concept that will stick with them for the rest of their lives.”
But the I Love You Club reinforces and enhances reading and math as well.
For instance, when doing a business plan, students must figure out how much money is needed to purchase supplies for their project.
“It enhances the academics especially reading and math, which we know are the fundamentals,” she said.
Chiphe is working with the Children’s Defense Fund at Marlboro County High School on the fourth Tuesday of each month with the entrepreneurship piece.
Overall, her goal is to establish more I Love You clubs around the county in schools, churches and other organizations.
For more information about the I Love You Club, visit www.evaharleychiphe.com or email Chiphe at firstname.lastname@example.org.