Highlights from AfroPunk 2013

Posted 2 CommentsPosted in Activists, Artists, Students, Teachers

Thanks to everybody who made it out to the 9th Annual AfroPunk Festival! We’re already looking forward to next year’s festivities!

On August 24th and August 25th, an estimated 30,000 people from all walks of life united at Commodore Barry Park in Brooklyn to celebrate “the other black experience.”

Progressive Pupil tabled on Activism Row during both days. We made new friends while discussing Black studies with festival-goers, sold Progressive Pupil tees, tanks and totes and promoted our film Black and Cuba. Many people also took advantage of our invitation to ask Principal Organizer Dr. Robin Hayes any Black studies question!

According to Joselyn Cooper, festival organizer, “We describe AfroPunk as a free space for African Americans — and anyone else who wants to come onto that space — to just be who they are, and not being defined by monolithic definition of what, sort of, the outside culture puts on us as African American people.”

So, what does AfroPunk mean to you?

By Claudie Mabry

Photographs by Dr. Robin Hayes and Alexis Handcock

Brooklyn Youth Against Violence

Posted 6 CommentsPosted in Allies, Parents, Students, Teachers
Founder of the Kings Against Violence Initiative, Dr. Robert J. Gores, stands with his team.
Founder of the Kings Against Violence Initiative, Dr. Robert J. Gore, stands with his team.

Set against the backdrop of sadness, great debate and urgency, one group is taking bold action to stop gun violence among American youth — a fast-moving and poisonous trend. The Kings Against Violence Initiative (KAVI) based in Brooklyn is a hospital-based, school-based and community-based organization that provides young people with safe alternatives to interpersonal violence by empowering them with knowledge and activities that highlight their potential.

KAVI views the issue of interpersonal violence through a unique lens. Rather than positioning itself as an anti-gang program that condemns this aspect of communities around Brooklyn, KAVI understands that this is often a necessary association for many young people’s survival. Instead of combating or denying these negative truths directly, KAVI provides services at the point of impact to victims and works to create positive influences that sway youth towards a brighter, violence-free future.