A Key founder, Vu Truong would not be here today without having help from the kindness of strangers throughout his life. In short, It was luck and kindness that fishermen rescued refugees from a boat dead in the open seas and took them to the land. It was the kindness of a baptist congregation from Muskogee, Oklahoma that sponsored his family from an island refugee camp and allowed for their new lives in America. It was from scholarship funds, grants and student loans set up by others that allowed him to get a Business Degree from Texas A&M that shaped his involvement in community.
There are countless points in Vu's journey that he can detail the acts of kindness of others. These actions have shaped his belief that giving back is not something he should do, but that he must do. It was apparent he has developed a deep passion to give back to others because of the positive impact charitable acts can play in the lives of others.
As the owner of The Phoenix on Westheimer, Vu realized that he could use the pub as a platform to reach out to a diverse group of people and help others with the maximum potential. It was made apparent to him that many large charities were not spending enough of their revenues on the actual charity they were raising funds to support. This triggered Vu to want to take a different approach on how he would spend his efforts helping charities. In having conversations with friends from The Phoenix, he received positive feedback to want to start this organization. Realizing he could not accomplish this goal on his own, he sought out help from people and friends at the pub with specific skill sets to help formulate the group. So after some time, recruiting, and a nudge from a patron and friend, The Friends of the Phoenix was founded.