Author: Lauren Bagger, IWS Content Writer
The I Will Survive Incorporation is a 501(c)(3) non-profit in the metropolitan area of Atlanta, Georgia. Every year they award a dedicated volunteer with the honor of Volunteer of the Year, an award given to those who have shown an unwavering effort to better the organization as well as themselves. This year Paris V. Johnson, an entrepreneur from Detroit, Michigan, deservedly won VOTY. She has taken her own experiences at I Will Survive Inc. to start her own business, Promoting Motivational Move Makers (P3M), which is an advertising and marketing company dedicated to supporting small business needs. P3M is a short video ad company that provides promotional videos, SEO management, website designs, logo design and animation to small businesses at affordable prices. Their mission is to make clients’ money and to be a point of contact for their clients’ entrepreneurial and startup needs. The company was borne out of founder Paris V. Johnson’s want to see others succeed: “ I see your vision…Entrepreneurship is not for the faint of heart…Wishing happiness, prosperity, and good health to all,” Paris says. In addition to their business services, P3M prioritizes community service, and a portion of profits are donated to I Will Survive Inc., as well as 3 other volunteer organizations. I Will Survive Inc. congratulates Paris for her nomination and her win. It is a privilege to serve the Atlanta community with you at our side.
During an interview, founder, Anisa Palmer, explained her first impression of Paris V. Johnson. “She fell right in. What can I do to help? Where do I need to go? What’s the move? What needs to be done?… She knew what was bringing her here,” Anisa said. Paris’ commitment to helping others made her a perfect candidate for I Will Survive Inc.’s Volunteer of the Year award. Yet, it was her professionalism and dedication to improving the organization’s impact that made her win deserved. From consistently attending the monthly meetings, to showing up, unprompted, to offer a helping hand with events, to even dedicating part of her own business to raising money for IWS, Paris’ willingness to go above and beyond the organization’s call to action makes her a cherished point of strength within the company.
Paris embodies all IWS core values. She possesses unshakeable integrity, a sense of purpose that allows her to be consistently innovative, and she is a woman of wellness and equanimity. What brought Paris’ to IWS was her own mother’s battle with breast cancer. Paris’ mother conquered her first bout with the disease when Paris was a child. Years later it returned, but her mother survived it again and has been in remission for a decade. Paris’ bond with her mom strengthened during their fight with breast cancer and the two have become an inseparable and endearing duo. Her mother’s diagnosis was a pivotal moment in Paris’ life. Paris began to recognize the need for support and resources within the breast cancer community and became determined to be a part of the solution. Disappointed with other breast cancer organizations for their lack of transparency, Paris’ chose the IWS for their honesty and the intimate relationship they form with their staff, volunteers, and those they help.
Brought on initially as a volunteer and training as a health advocate, Paris’ quickly became a welcomed asset to the team. Ms. Palmer recounted that once, Paris attended two of the organization’s events in one day. As an IWS fitness workshop finished, Paris’ speedily drove across Atlanta to attend an IWS speaking event. She was exhausted but ready to offer support by any means necessary. “…In comes Paris like magic,” Ms. Palmer remembers.” She was determined to find us. She was determined to be there.” Since her arrival, Paris has brought nothing but her best. It is recognized that the work achieved by the IWS would not be possible without volunteers like Paris.
“Before the titles, before the acts of kindness, Paris is a good human being…We praise her mom for raising her right!” Ms. Palmer laughed. Paris grounds herself in her convictions and inspires others to do the same. As a businesswoman and a minority, Paris has little tolerance for the unjust and does not bite her tongue for the sake of politeness. She is strong-willed–when she says she’ll get something done it would take an otherworldly force to prevent her from doing so. Paris has a depth to her that is a rarity in most, and yet when asked to describe herself her reply is poetic in its simplicity. Rather than seeing herself as the powerhouse that she is, she describes her life as “residing in the clouds.” “It’s bright and quiet up there,” she wrote. Paris won Volunteer of the Year because she possesses an incredible sense of self that others spend a lifetime trying to obtain. One could call Paris’ motivation to help others persistent drive, but Paris would rather describe it as her life’s purpose. She lives a fulfilled life. One of encouraging others and serving them so that they too, can succeed.
Story written by Lauren Bagger, I Will Survive, Inc. Content Writer
About the Author: Lauren Bagger is a graduate of Boston College with a B.A. in English and a concentration in Journalism and International Studies. Check out more work from Lauren here: https://laurenbagger.com