Six years after their graduation from Boys’ Latin, several classmates continue to work together to promote their school’s core values of courage, integrity, and compassion. Billy Wingo ’15 and Devin Harvin ’15 are the chief officers of Beneficial Pain, a nonprofit organization devoted to helping underserved communities in and around Baltimore. “Through a combination of engaging, empowering, and investing, we are a catalyst for change in our community,” they proclaim on their website.
With the support of a team that also includes Lakers Chris Smith ’15 and Jerel Archer ’15, Beneficial Pain has sought to grow its local presence, and in doing so, has partnered with BL. Speaking remotely to the upper school in January, Wingo told the story of the organization’s founding, inspired in part by his battle with cancer in 2019. He also invited students to join “We the Change,” a club that would act as an affiliate of his company. : what Mr. McDonald calls its “boots on the ground.”
Several months later, “We the Change” has already done significant work. The group raised money to buy school supplies, which they assembled into kits called “growth packets” and then donated to Sweet Potato Kids, an organization based in Owings Mills, that distributed the items to area students in need. The group raised an even $4000, which was more than four times their initial goal. The funds enabled the purchase and distribution of one hundred growth packets.
Mr. McDonald, Boys’ Latin’s upper school dean of students, credits student leadership for the club’s success, giving special mention to Caleb Woodlon ‘23, Finn Hopkins ‘22 and Neelan McMillan ‘21.
“It’s a great group of guys,” says current junior Finn Hopkins, “I’ve always wanted to give back to Baltimore. It means a lot to know that just by doing these little things we can help give kids there a chance to succeed.”
After the summer, “We the Change” figures to hit the ground running in September, as they continue their efforts to make positive change in the Baltimore community.