NFL Alum, former Indianapolis Colts Marlin Jackson, hosts community breakfast honoring Indy public school educators, a mother and her child

Fight for Life Foundation, founded by Marlin Jackson, to host 1st annual Building Dreams Champions Breakfast at Colts Training Facility

(INDIANAPOLIS) – June 7, 2023 – Fight for Life Foundation, an Indianapolis not for profit organization that helps underserved youth develop by providing social-emotional learning programs, is hosting its first-ever community breakfast on Friday, June 16, from 8-10 a.m., at the Indiana Farm Bureau Football Center located at 7001 West 56th Street Indianapolis, IN 46254. During the event, public school educators (from Indianapolis Public Schools, IPS Innovation Network Schools, and charter schools), plus a mother and her son, will be recognized for their commitment to education (and helping students make positive life decisions). The event is free and open to the public. However, limited seating available and a registration is required at

“This event will be a celebration of families and educators who are all working with Building Dreams to support students,” said former Indianapolis Colts Marlin Jackson, Fight for Life Founder & CEO. “It’s about awareness and community building, as well as recognizing the importance of bringing others in, in order to find solutions for our youth.”

During the event, in addition to enjoying a free breakfast at the Indianapolis Colts’ training facility, attendees will learn more about Fight for Life through family impact stories, hear from Jackson himself, and more. Guests will also be able to “tour” the Building Dreams technology on their own through interactive stations that focus on emotion identification and management.

“Our hope is to intentionally model social-emotional learning to our guests,” Jackson said.

Jackson created Fight for Life Foundation in 2007. Since that time, it has served more than 13,000 underserved kids. In 2018, Jackson and his team created a new tech platform, Building Dreams, which allows students to share their feelings, emotions, and stress levels every day they’re in school, and even when they are not in school. The program is developed for grades K-12 and includes incentives and intervention models to motivate students to share and improve their behavior.

“This is an aspect of mental health care and us acknowledging the zones of stress. I know firsthand how hard it can be when you enter school with stress and personal trauma,” Jackson said. “Students are facing all types of adversity, and sometimes those things can affect their focus and behavior in school.”

This is why Fight for Life, through Building Dreams, is built to empower students of all ages to share their concerns in real-time and get the support they deserve. Currently over 6,000 Indianapolis-based students use the Building Dreams platform through 17 sites, either through their school or in connection with a youth organization they’re a part of. Building Dreams also allows educators, youth leaders, and students to share details if they see another student in duress, who may not be able to do it themselves. The goal is to help schools and organizations working with youth, connect with students, monitor how students are doing, and how they could be doing. Though the app allows such interaction, it is still FERPA and HIPAA compliant.

“The educators being honored during the Champions Breakfast have taken a very hands-on and immersive approach to using the app at their schools,” said Lisa Mitchell, Fight for Life Chief Operating Officer. “They are constantly meeting with the school and Building Dreams program leaders to ensure the program is working and that student needs are being met, based on insight gained through the Building Dreams app.”

This intentionality and insight allows Jackson and his team to adapt and continue personalizing the technology to meet the needs of the school or program they’re partnering with.

“Through a student-centered approach, we use a proven process to build stronger classrooms and create healthier schools,” Jackson said.

The year’s eight (8) recipients, who are grouped by their public school type, include the following:

IPS Innovation Network School Educators

  • Tihesha Henderson, Sankofa School of Success, Head of School
  • Stephanie West, Sankofa School of Success, Grade 4 Teacher
  • Kayla Wood, Phalen Leadership Academies 93, City Connects Site Coordinator

Indianapolis Public School Educators

  • Mitzi Freeland, Charles Fairbanks IPS 105, Grade 3 Teacher
  • David Gomez, Charles Fairbanks IPS 105, Lead Student Support Specialist
  • Chelsea Stockberger, Paul Miller IPS 114, Grade 3 Teacher

Family and Student Recipients

  • Ja’Vion Morton-Ross, a student at Sankofa School of Success, and his guardian Keisha Ross

To learn more about Fight for Life Foundation and its Building Dreams app, visit


About Fight for Life Foundation (FFL)
Founded in 2007, by former Indianapolis Colts cornerback Marlin Jackson, the Fight For Life Foundation helps underserved youth develop the social and emotional qualities needed for success. Since that time it has grown from the vision of founder Marlin Jackson into an independent 501(c)3 organization delivering services to vulnerable youth by providing social-emotional learning programs to more than 12,741 underserved youth. In 2018, FFL created Building Dreams, a comprehensive social-emotional learning (SEL) program that equips administrators with the data they need to support their teachers and students with resources to improve classroom management and student behavior issues. This includes engaging students with a fun, gamified program that rewards their responsible decision making and ultimately helps meet their needs. FFL’s mission is to help deserving but underserved youth develop the social and emotional qualities needed to be successful. FFLF programs use technology, education, enriching experiences, and wellness activities as the foundation for positive youth development. For more information, visit:

About Marlin Jackson
Marlin Jackson is a former Indianapolis Colts cornerback. He is a graduate of the University of Michigan, a social entrepreneur, and a lifelong-learner who sees every experience and encounter as an opportunity for learning. As a former collegiate and professional athlete, Marlin was groomed and developed within a structured, organized, and challenging environment. This experience of learning, in the classroom and in the arena of collegiate and professional football, caused Marlin to develop a unique perspective and skill set that is embedded in structure, organization, time-management, leadership, creativity, and passion. Over the years, Marlin has proven himself to be a goal-oriented, disciplined, and driven person who can do whatever is needed to help himself and others succeed. He has displayed these qualities throughout his life as a captain on the University of Michigan football team, in the National Football League with the Indianapolis Colts and Philadelphia Eagles, as a sports analyst and sports radio show co-host, and now, as President of Fight for Life Foundation, Revive Investments, Revive Property Group, MarlinJ28, and Prepare to Succeed. In 2012, Marlin married his beautiful wife, Mrs. Nikki Jackson. Together, they have three smart, handsome, loving boys: Camden, Kingston, and Kash Jackson. Mr. Jackson is extremely passionate about his faith, family, and occupational purposes in life.

Median Contacts:

For general event questions, contact Anna Sutter at

For news media inquiries, contact or call 317-353-3064.

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