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About Market 18

Our Story

5 years ago, our family took in a young man, GeQwan, who was homeless
after aging out of the foster care system. He was struggling to navigate life
independently, left without resources or a way to provide for himself.

After he moved in, we learned he was an incredibly talented chef and
wanted to own his own business. Though he had great skill and abilities
in the area of cooking, the business side of things wasn’t something he was
able to do on his own. I wanted to help him find a way he could make
money to become independent by using his incredible skills.

We tried all kinds of things and finally came up with the idea of selling
his amazing seasoning blends. This not only created income for him,
but also made him feel seen and supported by the community.
Because of his generous supporters who buy his spices,
he is now living independently.

I loved working with him, and I knew there had to be a lot more youth
in Dream Makers who are talented, but just need an opportunity
to help create a product, market it, and sell it to generate
needed income and valuable work experience.

Market 18 was born out of a place with a heart to help support
former foster youth and to raise awareness about these incredible
human beings who are not only survivors, but talented artists. Consider
purchasing a gift for your loved ones or something special for yourself!

Julie Mavis,
Founder + Executive Director of Dream Makers/Market 18

Our Why

Every year 23,000+ teens exit the foster care system
without a family to help them transition into adulthood.
They are left to fend for themselves as they struggle to survive alone.

Market 18 is a program of Dream Makersan independent nonprofit that is
on a mission to change the lives of youth who have aged out of foster care.

Dream Makers h
elps to remove barriers that stand in the way
of the empowered, connected lives these youth dream of having.