by The Philadelphia Student Union July 15, 2019
Update 7/31/19: Thanks to all your support, we have raised 75% of the funds needed for BAYM! We just need to raise $740 more to meet our goal. Will you help us get there by making a donation today?
It’s summer in Philadelphia. For members of the Philadelphia Student Union, that means one thing: it’s time for our youth organizing and leadership institute, BAYM: Building a Youth Movement.
This year, we are expanding BAYM to a six-week-long program. This year’s BAYM will be our longest-running and most intensive to date, with a focus on political education, media and wellness projects. This will allow Philadelphia Student Union members to develop their leadership skills and organizing acumen, while also connecting our school-based struggles to the life of our neighborhood.
However, to fund the program to run for a full six weeks, we must raise an additional $3,000 by August 9. If just 60 people each donate $50, we can make our leadership development program a reality.
- A donation of $50 will fund two members’ transportation to and from the program.
- A donation of $150 will fund the purchase of a new Audio Recorder for our video project in Malcolm X Park.
- A donation of $250 will pay for lunch and snacks for all members for one week of the program.
This year, BAYM will feature two new components: the Meditation with Malcolm Project and the Malcolm X Park Video Project.
Meditation with Malcolm Project
The Meditation with Malcolm Project will provide a space for our members to learn practices on how to sustain themselves as students, activists and organizers while also reflecting on the teachings of Malcolm X. Students will learn meditation skills, build community, and engage in political study of Malcolm X’s writings. This project will be co-facilitated by Kahdijha Johnson, PSU staff, and Dr. Sheena Sood, yogi, activist, scholar and a member of PSU’s extended political family. As an organization committed to supporting students in building power to transform the education system, we also believe it is essential for all our members to have knowledge and experiences with practices that decrease mental pressure and allow them to sustain themselves and the work for the long haul.
Malcolm X Park Video Project
Malcolm X Park, located directly across the street from our office, is a central hub for community building and activity in the neighborhood, led by a group of local Black elders. In a partnership with Scribe Video Center’s Precious Places Program, which supports organizations in developing short educational films, our members will create a short film about Malcolm X Park. Members will be conducting interviews and learning how to film and how to edit footage, culminating in a completed film, which will be presented at a community event during the school year. Our goal is that the film will emerge from this project will be a tool to help preserve Malcolm X Park as a community space. We believe that the preservation of this space is critical to young people deepening their understanding of community both within and outside of schools. For the past two years, the Philadelphia Student Union has focused on integrating arts and culture into our organizing and our organizational culture. The Malcolm X Park Video Project will build upon this work. The Malcolm X Park Video Project is also an opportunity for inter-generational learning for our members; they will connect with community members about use of the park and changes in the broader West Philadelphia community due to gentrification.
Thank you for supporting our summer youth leadership institute!