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Project 88 Handbags – Looking Good and Doing Good

Purchase the exclusive Project 88 handbag for just $188.88! Authentic Italian leather, designed by August California.

Purchase the exclusive Project 88 handbag for just $188.88! Authentic Italian leather, designed by August California.

The price tag $188.88 may seem like a lot for a bag, but it’s the incredibly worthy cause behind the bag that’s really worth the money. Not to mention it’s downright cute and made of authentic Italian leather…

You’ve heard me go on and on about how much I just adore Project 88 Foundation since it started just a few months ago, co-founded by Houston Texans tight-end Garrett Graham and his ridiculously impressive wife (and yes, I’ll say it again – the bombshell that she is) Ericka.
Not only do you get to own one of these perfectly-sized and wonderfully crafted bags, but the proceeds will help support certified college advisors in Houston Public schools as well as provide scholarships for summer leadership camps.
Here’s a quick Q&A with one of my favorite Texan wives and all the hard work she’s putting into Project 88 Foundation. You’ll be amazed at how much they’ve accomplished in such a short amount of time (I know I am!).
The Blonde Side: Short version – what is Project 88?
Ericka Graham: We connect low-income and underserved students to college advisors and leadership training. In one sentence: We connect students to OPPORTUNITY!
TBS: What are your successes so far?
EG: After raising over $300,000, Project 88 was able to:
1. Sponsor 8 AdviseTX college advisors in 8 HISD Schools: Davis High School, Yates High School, Chavez High School, Washington High School, Sam Houston High School, Barbara Jordan High School, Sterling High School, and Waltrip High School
2. We also sent our Project 88 Young Leadership Board to a leadership camp this summer (Eagle University) and we are bringing Eagle University to Houston next summer, on the Rice University Campus—for 100 students!
3. In addition to hosting a summer camp for 100 students next year, we also had the opportunity to host and sponsor the first ever EMERGing leadership institute at Rice University. At this event, first-generation-college students were able to explore the challenges of being first generation, while also receiving hands-on coaching from leadership professionals and college professors at Rice University.
TBS: Favorite part of Project 88? 
EG: I never have to wake up, and question if my work is meaningful. I think of our Project 88 students and the students that will go to college because of our sponsored advisors, and I know that we can and will change lives and create generational change in this city.
TBS: So you’re selling bags now?
EG: Selling bags is a fun way to promote our organization and raise money at the same time. I knew I wanted to do something on August 8th (because the date is 8-8) so I figured that launching a product would be a fun thing to do. I also know girls in Houston love to shop, and with a partner like August California to work with, creating the concept and vision for the Project 88 bag was super fun! we wanted to sell a bag that would last, keep you organized, and be color neutral, and our Project 88 Portofino Pouchette made and designed by August California was the perfect fit!
TBS: The price?
EG: Our bags are $188.88, and you can find them on project88bag.org
TBS: Where will the money go?
EG: The money raised by theses bags will help fund camp tuition for Eagle University summer camp! 100% of the proceeds go to Project 88.
TBS: I obviously get the play on the #88, but what exactly will $188.88 do?
EG: $188.88 will cover one students meal tickets and books/materials for summer camp.
TBS: My readers many want to help. How can they help RIGHT NOW (other than buying one of these great bags!)? 
EG: Right now we are looking for corporate sponsors for our Gala and Golf Outing in April, as well as volunteers for our summer camp in 2016.
TBS: Since this is The Blonde Side and you’re one of my favorite blondes, tell me a blonde joke:
EG: Blonde: “What does IDK stand for?”
Brunette: “I don’t know.”
Blonde: “OMG, nobody does!
A big thanks to the Grahams for always working so diligently to give back in a way that will affect these students lives well beyond their college years. Please take a minute to check out their site, and join them on FB for updates.