Young investors giving back to help struggling MLGW customers keep lights on

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Some young investors are helping keep the power on for people struggling to pay their utility bills as we head into winter during this pandemic.

Young, Black and giving back, these friends turned business partners are making a big move in their community. They are from Memphis, and they know the struggles.

“I grew up on CSA, MIFA, you know, government assistance, as far as sometimes my mom needed help,” said Joshua Stewart, 24. “That’s how how the bills are paid from time to time.”

So they wanted to help those in need. These 20-something traders with the Tradehouse Investment Group have gathered money to help MLGW customers pay their utility bills.

“We’re just helping others get financial freedom,” said Terreon Brown, also 24. “Really helping others to, you know, do better in life and just inspiring other people to do more.”

The Tradehouse Cares effort was the brain child of Stewart.

Monday they took a check for $10,000 to MLGW for the Gift of Comfort Program. Fifty families and elderly will get help paying their MLGW bills from $200 to $1,000.

“I know it might just be a Band-Aid to certain individuals,” Stewart said. “But at least, sometimes that’s all people need, you know, an extra 30, 60 days of lights could change somebody’s whole year.”

Sharon McBride is one of those getting help.

“I’m retired but I have a volunteer job, and it’s closed down, so even a little amount you think you might get, it’s hard to think of what you’re going to do next,” she said.

The young men say after several successful years in business, it’s their way to share…

“We’re trying to bless people, ma’am, at the end of the day,” investor Rodney Monie said.

And they want to show there are many business opportunities for young people.

“There’s a lot of financial problems that we have in a city, so we have a financial solution,” said Kerrick Jones, 22. “This financial solution can help in many ways, you know, it’s helped people pay their bills or, you know, provide for their children.”

The recipients who got their utilities paid were chosen either by MLGW or by the young men themselves.

“I think people don’t understand there are good people out here,” Stewart said. “So if you understand that that might push you to keep going.”

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