I attended the 13th annual Lights On Afterschool! Breakfast of Champions, on Wednesday October 21, 2015. A quick recap of the breakfast “This event called attention to the critical need for and importance of afterschool and summer programs to children, youth, families, and communities; and increased awareness and support for afterschool and summer programs among policymakers, funders, and other decision makers.” (afterschoolri.org)
The breakfast was a great way to talk to some of my YDEV classmates that I never spoke to before. I was glad for the opportunity to connect, learn, and eat at this event. Throughout the breakfast there was multiple speakers. One thing that I really liked was that every speaker was very different. There was a principal, a high school student, and a technology professional who all somehow were or are affected positively from afterschool programs.
I had to leave a bit earlier than everyone else because I had class at 11:00, however I was able to stay for some of Jonathan Kozol’s speech. I did not know who he was before this breakfast, but I soon learned that he was a world-renowned author and advocate. I honestly did not want to leave until he was done speaking. His speech was memorizing and inspirational.
I think one of the most important aspects of an afterschool program is understanding “Who are the youth in my community.“ As we learned from readings and the TED Talk with Mellody Hobson on the topic of Color Blind or Color Brave, it’s important to be color brave. To embrace the youths cultures and race. As I stated in a previous blog, she stated that we cannot afford to be color blind, but have to be color brave. I agree with this because being color blind can lead to ignorance, and not being aware that there is still racial discrimination in our society. She raises this issue of racial discrimination because she believes it threatens to rob another generation of all the opportunities that all of us want for all of our children, no matter what their color or where they come from.
Overall the breakfast was very educational and I’m so thankful for the opportunity.