I feel as though there is a sense of deep urgency in the work we are doing in the Port community. These were words spoken by Dr. King over 50 years ago ring even more true in these times. I have not been vocal about this as it has been traumatic, but I was almost caught in the middle of one of these shootings mentioned below. And I can keep asking myself is, "What about the next generation of youth who will have to endure the cycle of violence?" We must use the philosophy of nonviolence to clear the dark and stormy clouds of ignorance and to usher in a new horizon of restoration and economic independence for all of God's people…
CHRISTOPHER HOPE, MOISE MICHEL AND TYRIE DANIEL (LOOP LAB)
Black American history is constantly being overlooked and not properly represented in the media within western society. The study of Black history in America shines a light on the everyday influence that Black Americans have on everything from medicine to sports. As a young Black boy raised in a small town outside of Atlanta,GA, it was empowering to learn about the story of Jesse Owens. He came from a small town like mine. Here was a brilliant and talented black man who excelled off of the track, as much as he did on the track. In the 1936 Olympic games, Jesse shocked the world by blowing out his competition, and dispelled any notion of Nazi superiority to the world. The story continues to inspire me, and when something positively inspires people, why shouldn’t it be celebrated? We have to celebrate black history more as a society; Black history IS American history. Even non-Black Americans can grow and improve their lives by getting inspiration from it.The Loop Lab is all about mentorship which is so important in black communities especially because black youths across the US in 2018 are being targeted. Whether it is police brutality, heart disease, lack of access to healthier foods, the industrial prison complex system or racial profiling, there are just so many pitfalls and traps for us to escape now, and it takes more wisdom than we currently have to help guide us through these challenges...
Have you ever been blown away by an experience that leaves an undeniable impact on you? That was my experience participating in the United Nations 56th Commission on Social Development (CSocD56)! My name is Tyrie Daniel, and I am a resident of Cambridge, Massachusetts, and a future student of the Loop Lab. I was raised in the Port neighborhood of Cambridge, which was a diverse, working-class community. Cambridge is known internationally for Harvard University and MIT. But things are now rapidly changing in my community...
Have you ever been blown away by an experience that leaves an undeniable impact on you? That was my experience participating in the United Nations 56th Commission on Social Development (CSocD56)! My name is Tyrie Daniel, and I am a resident of Cambridge, Massachusetts, and a future student of the Loop Lab. Because of my involvement with the Loop Lab launch team, I was able to go to the United Nations headquarters to participate in CSocD56 this February.
I never thought that I’d be in a place like the United Nations headquarters (UNHQ). Coming from a low-income community in the Port Neighborhood of Cambridge, MA, young people that look like me never have access to a powerful space like that. Just entering the United Nations headquarters grounds I felt proud and important. Like I belonged there. What if every young adult from an underrepresented background could experience this?
Immediately, I was blown away by the delegates, NGO employees, and UN staff that I met. I was also amazed at how interested these important people were in me and the Loop Lab program! I met the permanent ambassadors from several countries who heard our presentation and told us that they would like this program for the young adults in their countries. The Loop Lab showed me that not only could I be there at the United Nations headquarters among top global policymakers, but that the United Nations actually wants me there as well!
One of the most amazing experiences from my time there was being able to go into the UN News studio. What made it amazing was seeing the state-of-the-art equipment and learning how the main recording console operates. I was also able to meet one of the managers who was very kind and taught me how to use their audio software and console. He engineers UN News broadcasts from around the world.
Later that day a UN security member visited our exhibition and I spoke to him about the program. He seemed to be impressed and insisted on giving us a guided tour of the HQ himself. In my opinion, the most impactful place that he took us was the General Assembly room, which is the main policy making room of the UN. It is an incredible space where few people are actually allowed to go into, and where world history is made.
I left the United Nations HQ excited about my future. I feel like I was there as a representative for all underrepresented young adults who are pushing for fair opportunities in the marketplace. I don’t want a job to be just given to me without merit - I want to prove myself. I just want a fighting chance in the digital marketplace, the same as everybody else. It is important that other youth experience what I have and that the Loop Lab receives as much support in resources as much as possible. I believe that the program will help to use art to change the lives of my peers because many of them feel that their opportunities are slim. Thank you for reading my story this far.
Tyrie Daniel, future student of The Loop Lab