SHOUTOUT ATLANTA FEATURE: Meet Tiombé O’Rourke | True Blue 1881, Inc Founder & CEO
We had the good fortune of connecting with Tiombé O’Rourke and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Tiombé, can you talk to us a bit about the social impact of your business? Since 2017 I have been helping students at Historically Black Colleges and Universities around the country. 2017 was the year I discovered many college students were experiencing food insecurity, and I decided to feed the students of the Atlanta University Center the week of Thanksgiving. The idea was to give students who couldn’t afford to go home, a chef-prepared meal. We also gave gift cards to airlines, gift bags, and cash. This was the impetus for me to seek out needs among HBCU students and then bridge the gap. To date, we have become a nonprofit, fed hundreds of students, given away dozens of scholarships, assisted students through a housing crisis as a result of covid, paid balances of graduating seniors so they could receive their diplomas. Additionally, we take care of needs like gas, groceries, car repairs, health insurance, really anything that would be a stumbling block to graduating. The makeup company I own (GEAT Cosmetics) with my cousin, Alexis Allen, also gives away a monthly scholarship to an HBCU student. To date, we have given well in excess of $100,000 in direct aid to students. We will also be partnering with the historical Paschal’s Restaurant to feed the students of the AUC. The restaurant will be providing discounted prices and we will pick up the tab for dozens of students. My goal has always been to directly impact the students while minimizing the red tape. Very few of the scholarships given are academically based, which allows more students to benefit. Our tagline is, “Philanthropy done differently!” Moving forward, we hope to continue partnering with local businesses and corporations to help eliminate food, shelter, and financial insecurities among HBCU students. Thank you to Coke, Puma, AT&T, Gardner Trial Attorneys, Kenneth R O’Rourke, Jr. Esq, Kevin Washington, MD, Clifton Prince, MD, The Chapel of Peace Funeral Homes, among others for your continued support.