Be The Miracle will host its first cocktail reception, “Changing Seasons … Changing Lives,” at the South Shore Cultural Center on Oct. 26, from 6 to 10 p.m.

Attendees will enjoy hors d’oeuvres, beer, wine, a signature sangria, delectable sweets, raffles, auctions and other fun surprises.

Be The Miracle was started in 2015 by two Beverly residents, Kristen Perteet and Hassahn Liggins, who wanted to make a difference in the lives of young people in Chicago. They began by holding essay contests for college scholarships and hosting a traditional backyard party to raise funds. The organization has grown to include mentoring, financial literacy workshops, youth leadership development and service projects.

Liggins and Perteet believe that they, along with their partners and supporters, can help develop the leaders who will help take back and rebuild communities and end gun violence in the city. Be The Miracle was honored in 2018 with a resolution from the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago.

The purpose of the cocktail reception is to raise money for Be The Miracle’s programs—Be The Scholar and Be The Leader—as well as to honor six Chicagoans who have done great work in communities and have plans of making an even greater impact.

Be The Leader provides participants with knowledge, tools, guidance and support in a safe environment. These tools are designed to further their development as a student, leader and community-minded individual.

Be The Scholar provides the winners of an essay contest with a scholarship to help with college expenses. The participants are Chicago high school seniors who have a passion for their community and education. The scholarship winners participate in activities and events that benefit other Chicago youths and will be offered assistance in order to be a leader in the community.

The cocktail reception honorees include Cappie Pondexter, retired WNBA player; Jhaianna Cooper, the first scholarship winner and founder of Radiant Souls; Kristopher Perteet, culture specialist at Muchin College Prep and Be The Scholar leader; Jahmal Cole, founder of My Hood, My Block, My City; Erik “Rico” Nance, restaurateur (Mikkey’s Retro Grill, Litehouse Whole Food Grill and The Soul Shack) and DeMarco Sams, creator of Everybody Eats.

“Be The Miracle has been more than a scholarship opportunity for me and other young adults,” said Cooper. “They have been a mentor and inspiration for how I would like to live my life.”

Tickets for the event can be purchased at the Be The Miracle website or at Eventbrite. Donations, sponsorship opportunities and ad book purchases can also be made on the organization’s website.

Be The Miracle sponsors and donors include CIBC USA, Ill 4 Real Entertainment, Lagunitas, Revolution Brewing, MillerCoors, Cooper’s Hawk Winery, Beverly Bakery and Cafe, Sprinkles, Raising Cane’s Chicken Fingers, Nothing Bundt Cakes, Eli’s Cheesecake, Cakes By Alicia, Lou Malnati’s, Infinite Taste, Embellish Jewelry, Alexandra Marks Jewelry, Skinny Pop Popcorn, Second City, Zanies, KJP Diversified, Designs For Urban Comforts, L. Productions, Chicago Cubs, Joe Saindon Remodeling, Emilio Bucks!, Illinois Central Elite, Optimum Performance and Mandi Vee Media.