Commit and Act (U.S.)
Black Pearl Financial Services, LLC
In 2015, Ruben Rozental was introduced to Commit and Act, a nonprofit committed to providing therapy and support to individuals affected by violence and war in Sierra Leone. The organization strives to support Sierra Leoneans in finding trust and courage again by working with professional psychiatrists. Ruben quickly found value in the Commit and Act’s mission and immediately jumped in, working to stabilize bookkeeping and create financial processes for the budding nonprofit.
Over the past three years, Commit and Act has grown from a budget of $40,000 to well over $300,000. Ruben’s transformational leadership has allowed the organization to enjoy such successful expansion, reaching new residents in Sierra Leone and expanding services to run a shelter for abused girls — the only such shelter in the entire country. When ebola broke out in Sierra Leone, Commit and Act recognized that the disease was spread during burial rituals such as bathing and dressing the body of a dead loved one. Commit and Act gathered Chiefs together from various villages for a three day conference where the elders worked together to create new ways to honor the dead that did not include the bathing process. After the conference and upon acceptance of the new ceremony, the level of ebola dropped significantly in many villages.
For Ruben, some of his favorite memories with Commit and Act have involved traveling to Sierra Leone and getting to know the people who benefit from the organization’s work directly. Sierra Leone is considered one of the poorest countries on the planet — less than 10% of its roads are paved and the life expectancy is below 40 years. Despite these grave circumstances, the people he encounters are resilient and proud. Ruben values the fact that Commit and Act empowers people and gives them the ability to make positive change in their own lives.