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Property Owner’s Propensity To Give Back Propels a Community Forward

Property Owner’s Propensity To Give Back Propels a Community Forward

Lester’s first visit to a local food pantry would leave an indelible mark on his heart, mind, and the southeast Cleveland community as a whole for years to come. During that initial visit, Lester was amazed that he could choose any food item he wanted — solely due to the generosity of his neighbors. Right then, Lester vowed to emulate such selflessness, promising himself he would direct future real estate business profits back into his community as soon as he was able.

After he purchased an investment property on Harvard Avenue, Lester noticed it contained a section where a shut-down daycare once operated. Lester knew in his gut he had to help, but didn’t know in what fashion. "I prayed on it," Lester recalls. "I asked God to give me some guidance on what to do with this building. I was still confused when I remembered that first food pantry visit. So, I decided to open a food pantry here to ensure that anyone who arrives can get whatever they need." Celebrating its 10th anniversary this May, The Harvard Square Center continues to receive regular supplies through your gifts to the Food Bank.

"The Greater Cleveland Food Bank has been with me since day one. They’ve been awesome," Lester shares. "Their support feeds the community, but it also helps spread the word about the help we provide. This place is almost like a bank — in this area, a food desert, it brings people in, and then they see the other programs we have."

"I’m so grateful," Lester continues. "Harvard Square has been such a huge blessing to so many people. We don’t turn anyone away." Lester’s future plans include expanding the center’s services, locations, and range in order to touch more lives. "That’s always been the plan," he smiles. "I haven’t figured out exactly how we’ll do it yet. But I know there’s a way."

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