Bill Lerner, owner of iPark, will continue supporting children through his shoe-giving nonprofit, Billy4Kids, this upcoming year. In addition to revealing a multifaceted plan to increase funding, reach more developing regions, and boost national awareness of Billy4Kids, Lerner reported an ambitious goal of providing 5,000 children with safe and comfortable footwear by the end of the year. One of New York’s leading philanthropists for the past twenty years, Bill Lerner became inspired to found Billy4Kids in 2013, when he discovered an article detailing youth around the world suffering from life threatening diseases caused by parasitic infections. Upon further research, he learned that these children were most often in hard to reach, tropical regions, and that the majority of their ailments could be avoided if they were given access to reliable footwear. Later that year, Lerner co-founded Billy4Kids with the mission to provide the basic needs of children all over the world in the form of shoes. This is meant to foster a safer environment for them to live and play. Relying on donations from people around the country, each week the foundation ships shoes to remote, impoverished townships throughout Ghana, Haiti and Brazil. In the near future, Lerner plans to further expand the number of countries his charity is able to reach. To date, Billy4Kids has supplied over 3,000 children with a pair of adequate, reliable shoes, preventing thousands of possible parasitic infections. The foundation also pioneers support projects in the countries it serves, including Basketball to Uplift the Youth of Haiti. Emphasizing the importance of assisting the underprivileged who are unable to do so themselves, Lerner stressed that every contribution, no matter the size, form, or amount, plays an essential role in achieving the charity’s mission of building a safer world for these children. Anyone who wishes to donate can do so at collection areas located in schools, apartment buildings, supermarkets, and every iPark parking facility, as well as through the official Billy4Kids website, where there are further options to become involved by sponsoring a child, school, or becoming a volunteer. Bill Lerner is a business owner and philanthropist best known for his achievements as the President of iPark, New York’s largest privately owned parking garage operator. Founded more than 60 years ago by his father as a single lot known as Imperial Parking Systems, Lerner took over as CEO in 1997 and aggressively expanded the business through the acquisition of highly sought after properties throughout Manhattan. Now with nearly 150 user-friendly facilities and partnerships with Tesla Motors and CarCharging, iPark is leading the parking industry’s technological evolution. As the co-founder of Billy4Kids, Lerner’s efforts have earned him the prestigious Humanitarian Award at the annual Edeyo Gives Hope Gala, and recognition from St. Mary’s Healthcare System for Children for three consecutive years.
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