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About LaValla J. Wilson, PhD

Dr. Wilson is the founder of Mending Broken Pieces INC that provides Dream Connect.  Her work with students struggling with homeless during her years working in higher education inspired Dream Connect.  Through Mending Broken Pieces she believes that she can close the gaps in information availability and resource accessibility to create a more level playing field for homeless and at-risk youth to obtain economic stability for dream fulfillment.  Mending Broken Pieces is available for speaking engagements and  informational workshops.

Dream Machine Partners:

The Student Innovation Fellowship Program (SIF)

The Student Innovation Fellowship (SIF) Program collaborates with community partners, government agencies, and
for-profit companies to enhance learning and research at Georgia State University through the use of innovative
technology. SIF allows students to develop consulting expertise and share ideas on emerging technologies and
instructional innovations. SIF projects utilize digital curation, integrated marketing media platforms, web development and
content, 3D modeling, and community outreach. Sample clients include Maps Atlanta, Manuel’s Tavern, Homeless Resource
Project (Dream Machine), and the Atlanta Migration Worker Research Project. For more information about the SIF Program, please go to
their website:

Atlanta Count Project

The Atlanta Count Project goals are to: 1) provide metro-Atlanta service providers, policymakers, and youth advocates practical information on the size , nature, and needs of the homeless, precariously housed, and runaway youth in our community who are involved in forms of sex trafficking; 2) collect information that can be used to develop and refine policies, programs, and interventions to help these youth in our community; and 3) encourage a community-wide dialogue about the need and social determinants of youth homeless.  For additional information on Atlanta Youth Count please contact the Project at:

The Department of Religious Studies

Through Georgia State University (GSU) Department of Religious Studies required internship Rels 6400 a proposal was submitted to GSU Student Innovative Fellow (SIF). The “Dream Machine,” a mobile-first website for homeless and at risk-youth began as a research proposal for the Georgia State University Student Innovative Fellow (SIF) program as a component in the required internship course in the MA in Religious Studies and Concentration in Nonprofit Management program. The SIF fellowship is an example of the opportunities available for students to apply their training in religious studies to create practical solutions to real life problems. The student worked closely with her advisor during the internship and SIF project, and she kept the department Chair up to speed as the website work progressed. If you would like additional information about GSU’s Religious Studies department, please visit or email Dr. Molly Bassett at

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