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Meet Mike Davis of 1 Body Outreach in Orlando

Today we’d like to introduce you to Mike Davis.

Mike, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I grew up in Augusta, GA (there wasn’t much good going on there at all). I’ve always been known for having a big smile, an easy going personality, and being a die-hard Georgia Bulldogs football fan. I nearly had my life taken in a variety of ways (fights that led to seizures, crossfire, falling asleep behind the wheel while intoxicated). Parents divorced at an early age. Was a very gifted student who felt no need to apply himself in school. Would not have graduated high school, if not for my guidance counselor pushing me. Would not have cared about trying to go to college, if not for basketball. I was very arrogant and felt that I could be with any young lady, drink anything or live any way I wanted to live, and everything would be okay.

I had some serious encounters with God over the years. I was spared from many things that should have killed me. My humble beginnings are greatly appreciated today. I wouldn’t exactly recommend the road that I took for anyone else. However, it was ultimately my past experiences and humble beginnings that led to where I am today.

Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
Struggling to be accepted by the more intellectual crowd because I was a jock. But, I was also an intellectual (I had a passion for writing) and didn’t think the jocks would accept me. I was the kid who could have sat at both lunch tables and been just fine.

My parents divorced when I was 10.

I was in 2 awful fights as a 12-year old that nearly cost me my life. I have a fractured sinus bone with the scar to prove it.

I also was nearly killed in a crossfire that had nothing to do with me.

Nearly killed a motorcycle driver in a car accident.

I was nearly an academic casualty due to not being held accountable by anyone. I would do great on projects and tests. I had incredible SAT scores but I below a 2.0 GPA.

I went to 4 colleges in 15 years before obtaining my B.S in Business Management from Belhaven University.

I was evicted from 3 apartments in 4 years before becoming a homeowner 6 years later.

Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about 1 Body Outreach – what should we know?
1 Body Outreach exists to use sports, performing arts, and education as tools to empower our youth to make good decisions and become productive role models in our community. We are a nonprofit organization.

Basketball
We have a phenomenal youth basketball program that does not attract kids based on talent, but more so on the kids who need mentor-ship, guidance, structure, and father-figures. Yes, we do get some kids who are there mostly for the opportunity to play basketball as well, but they never leave the same as they were when they came to our program.

We have popular basketball camp called, Bigger Than Basketball. We are entering our 4th year of this camp. It comes with a guest speaker every week. Last year, we had Orlando Magic legend, Nick Anderson come out and spend time with the kids. We give away school supplies at the end of our camps.

We also have community events such as Midnight Basketball (partnership with local police departments), MLK 3 on 3 tournaments, and so much more designed to provide positive outlets and options.

Performing Arts
We have original stage plays (that I write and sometimes direct also). These plays are cast mostly by teens and target inner city teens. They speak to things that are real in their lives right now such as peer pressure, drug use, stereotypes, single parent issues, sexuality, falling victim to the streets, and many other situations that they face daily.

We have original skits that encourage younger, elementary age kids to love themselves just the way they are. This is designed to combat the bullying epidemic.

Education
We provide 1 on 1 tutoring to those who are involved in our program that has below a C in any class. We also provide school supplies each year via multiple supply drives.

Even though we are super-competitive and we coach hard, we never steer away from our mission just to compete with another basketball program for a few extra wins. We always want to do things the right way. I am grateful for all of the volunteers and sponsors that we have. Everything we do is of little to no cost to our parents. I am just trying to replicate my own success story through my God-given gifts and talents.

I’m extremely proud of winning the 2018 “I Have a Dream Award” at the City of Oviedo’s MLK Parade. This award is for whoever is considered to be making the greatest impact in the community by living Dr. King’s example.

Any shoutouts? Who else deserves credit in this story – who has played a meaningful role?
Wife – Kertrina Davis for putting up with my being busy all the time and being

My 2 sons – D’Andre and Malik for always understanding that even though daddy cares about a lot of kids, none are more important than them.

My high school guidance counselor did everything she possibly could to drag me towards graduation. I barely finished high school. Had to attend night school my senior year, and also needed my last final exam to determine if I’d be able to participate in the graduation ceremony or not.

My parents have been extremely supportive.

I have several close friends that have not only given me sound advice but have also invested in and served for 1 Body.

My church family, Antioch Missionary Baptist Church, Oviedo, FL is extremely supportive of what we do and have partnered with us on numerous occasions.

All of our volunteers, sponsors, partners and everyone who has ever played even the smallest role in what we do.

Contact Info:


Image Credit:
Leslie Gray Photography, Troy Johnson III, Kenny Clark

Getting in touch: VoyageMIA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

1 Comment

  1. A.J.

    June 8, 2018 at 4:22 am

    Inspirational! We need so much more of this!

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