Curriculum that is Culturally Relevant for the 21st century

Accessible Forums for Social Justice, Curriculum that is Culturally Relevant for the 21st century, Mental Health, Trauma

Free2Luv Organization

Picture source: Free2Luv.png

Why it’s important

This organization serves to put in place different programs to help reduce the amount of bullying that goes on in the educational system. The programs that they offer are meant to inspire the youth and help create better environments for education. They are dedicated to promoting individuality, celebrating equality, and spreading kindness by standing up to bullying by utilizing arts and entertainment. 

History and Purpose

They reached over 25 million people annually through global social media campaigns and have partnered with celebrities to spread awareness and create powerful community outreach events to spread the message that love is stronger than hate and braver than bullying. They have received achievement awards for community outreach, volunteerism, and positive impact on youth. They understand the difficulty that can come with expressing themselves and want to be there whenever someone hits a speedbump. Free2Luv seeks to help students find their own voice and stand out as individuals by showing that they matter.

People they serve

Their Target demographic is under-resourced youth, teens, and young adults by providing mental health support and Educational Services. They are not limited to just the educational system and have reach-out programs that allow you to become a part of their community. Other groups that they look out for are Gay, Lesbian, and bi-sexual individuals that are often severely criticized growing up. Transgender youth are more likely to be harassed and which often leads to self-harm. Free2Luv hopes to help people build self-esteem as well as self-love to help reduce the stress of growing up.

Image source: https://cdn.greatnonprofits.org/images/uploads/organizations/Free2Luv.jpg

Programs

They offer mental health empowerment programs, EXPRESS IT!, and WE CARE packages that serve to empower under-resourced youth struggling with bullying, identity, or self-harm. Free2Luv believes in having people express themselves in many different ways, as a result, their art and music program has reached more than 35,000 under-resourced youth. They host community get-togethers in schools, community centers, and festivals. They also believe that the expression of one’s story is a way to allow youth to become more comfortable with speaking out. This is aided by hosting peer-to-peer discussions about issues they might be facing with their ADVOCACY AND STORY-SHARING program.

Red flags?

I found that the distribution of funding was difficult to determine from the nonprofit organization’s front. This can be seen as a red flag due to there not being clear goals and spendings associated with donations received. Although they might not have a clear representation of the funds, I believe that the clarity that comes with being able to donate shows that they are streamlining the ability to donate. This is an organization that needs to appeal to the public eye and it has done so wonderfully. I think that discussing the budget and where the money is used in terms of programming would benefit the credibility of the nonprofit organization. Their message is broad and in some circumstances, I believe that a more specific message could be beneficial such as focusing on only particular minority groups. This is opposed to clumping together several under-resourced groups.

Similar work

The Alberti Center for Bullying Abuse Prevention at the University of Buffalo contributes with Free2Luv by creating presentations that seek to teach other students to not fall into the bystander effect. They want you to find the courage to stand up for those that are facing bullying.

They are paired with Build-A-Bear Foundation Literacy Program which serves to help learning students and less fortunate groups receive the literary skills needed in life.

Creating Communities of Learning that Include Families, Curriculum that is Culturally Relevant for the 21st century, First-Generation Students, Immigrant, Students of Color

Impecunious Immigrant Families and their Incoherences in a Foreign Forefront

As you might know, immigrating to a new country and starting your life all over again is extremely challenging. It’s even worse for students to rebuild connections and continue their education in a new locality. For such students, non-profit organizations like Equity in Education Coalition of Washington (EEC) are equalizing the opportunity gap and providing immigrants and students of color resources to better equip and excel in the United States.

The EEC’s mission is to provide academical assistance, support, and create opportunities for students of color. According to a research study, when students of color where compared to White students, college students of color reported an alarmingly higher rate of loneliness and emotional stress, anxiety, depression, and hopelessness.

Why is the group that you chose to research important?

As an international student myself, I faced a lot of academical and cultural difficulties in the beginning. Although my family is extremely well educated and financially independent, the transition from an Indian school to a US high school was pretty cumbersome and challenging.

For millions of other students like me, EEC provides opportunities and resources to help excel in schools and better fit in the social culture. They also host conferences and large-scale gatherings about anti-racism and equity in the education system.

Brief history of the educational organization that you have researched along with the purpose of the organization?

The EEC is a statewide civil rights organization that’s focused on revolutionizing education. Their goal is to create a society where the opportunity gap among students is eliminated and every child of color has an equal opportunity to succeed.

EEC was founded, led, and staffed by people of color. They fight for equality and resonate the voices of black and brown people on education issues.

Whom do they serve?

The EEC primarily aims to serve the minority/underrepresented people in the Washington state. Their target group includes first-generation immigrant students, students of color, and other students dealing with racism, discrimination, or inequality.

Programs offered?

The EEC offers many resources to help students transition easier. They provide videos, books, articles, education and financial interests, scholarships, tutoring, and assistance for anyone dealing with hardships.

What could they do better?

The EEC should provide more insights and expand their outreach all across the United States. They should also partner with tech companies and other NGO’s to help expand and provide real-world, hands-on learning opportunities.

They should also invest in further developing their website and hire/recruit more people to join their cause.

Was information about the organization accessible? Red flags?

Yes, most of the information was open-sourced and readily accessible to the public. Most people should be able to find out about the organization through Google or by scrolling their website (Click here to view the website).

What other organizations are doing similar work?

Other similar organizations that do similar work:

References

Image Credit:

“Home.” Supporting All Students, https://uwb.ds.lib.uw.edu/supportallstudents/.

Information Sources:

“Home.” Supporting All Students, https://uwb.ds.lib.uw.edu/supportallstudents/.

“Racial Equity Archives.” Equity in Education Coalition of Washington, https://eec-wa.org/resource-topics/racial-equity/.

Curriculum that is Culturally Relevant for the 21st century, Disabilities, Low Income, Poverty, Students of Color

A DIVE IN TO STAND FOR CHILDREN WASHINGTON:

The “Stand for Children Washington” is a non-profit education advocacy organization that focuses on ensuring that all students receive a high quality, relevant education, especially those whose boundless potential is overlooked and under-tapped because of their skin color, zip code, first language, or disability.

The Stand for Children Organization logo. Three adults, shaded in blue, are standing behind a child, shaded in white, with her hand raised. "Stand for Children" is written out in white letters to the right of them.
http://stand.org/

Why is this organization important?

Stand for Children Washington is an essential organization here, in Washington State. Without them, many children wouldn’t have the access and funds needed to succeed and grow as a student. Although Washington ranks first in State economy, we also rank twenty-two in Education Spending per student, and forty-two in high school graduation rates. Stand for Children Washington ensures that students who are susceptible to an opportunity gap (kids of color and/or kids from low-income families) get the same chance at succeeding in their education, which ultimately will lead to a successful future!

History of Stand for Children:

The Stand for Children organization first came to be in 1996. Jonah Edelman, the founder of Stand for Children, coordinated a founding rally in Washington D.C. that was attended by over 300,000 people! The Washington chapter of the organization started in 2007 with the goal of redefining basic education in the state of Washington. Because of their work, Washington’s Basic Education has improved tremendously, now offering increased instruction hours, enhanced requirements for graduating high school, increased funding towards transportation, and greater funding towards kindergarten!

Whom does Stand for Children serve?

As mentioned previously, Stand for Children Washington serves children who are susceptible to opportunity gaps such as children of color, children with disabilities, children from low-income families, foster children, etc. No child deserves to have less of an opportunity academically speaking, therefore Stand for Children Washington is committed to supporting policies that improve the outcome for students and ensuring that policies are implemented in the classroom setting. 

People marching at a "Stand for Children" rally in 1996. There are lots of adults and children present. The people at the front of the rally are holding a banner that says, "Stand for Children."
https://twitter.com/stand4children/status/1134802089060818947

Programs Offered:

When I was diving through Stand for Children’s website, I wasn’t able to find any “programs” that were offered. However, I was able to find careers that are listed. For people wanting to join the Stand for Children team there’s an “open positions” tab. As of right now there are only two positions available. An Organizer for the Indianapolis branch, and a 9th Grade Success Coach for the Memphis branch.

What Could Stand for Children do Better:

Critics of Stand for Children have stated that the organization represents business interests. Diane Ravitch, an education policy analyst, criticizes the organization for opposing teacher’s unions and seeking to impose standardized testing for public schools. More information about Stand for Children criticism can be found online, however not on their website.

Was information about the organization accessible?

I found it fairly easy to find information on the Stand for Children’s website. This blog post is a brief summary of the information based on their work in Washington State, however the website offers insight into national information as well. Their webpage is easy to navigate, as they have a lot of other links within to click on that grabs the reader’s attention. The only downside to their website is that they don’t have a section that addresses the criticism Stand for Children may have received, or a way to see what others have commented about the organization.

What other organizations are doing similar work?

Organizations that have similar ideologies and intentions as Stand for Children include Alliance for Education, Coalition for Community Schools, and League of Education. More information about these organizations and other non-profits can be found at https://www.seattle.gov/education/for-parents/other-resources-for-families!

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