YOUTH EMPOWERMENT SERIES
Education and awareness of self, society and its institutions at an early age is the key to young men and women becoming productive citizens of Long Island and the world. Throughout the year, Cedarmore Corporation operates programs that benefit youth from diverse communities and their families. In 2013, the organization introduced a Youth Empowerment Series, designed to lead critical conversations as they relate to each of the genders, respectively, through the “Girlz Talk” and “Boyz N2 Men” events. Each day is designed to focus on the real issues and challenges that each group faces and present sound techniques and strategies to address and overcome them.
“Girlz Talk” is a full day event where more than 400 girls ages 11 and up, gather for a full day of critical, culturally relevant conversations. Sessions are age appropriate, segmented into 2 specific age groups of 11-14 and 15-18+.
Girlz Talk seeks to narrow the information gap that exists in many communities by addressing the most pressing issues that girls face as they continue to grow and develop. Leading national and local speakers address critical topics including: Financial Literacy, Self Esteem, College Preparedness, Cyber-space Safety, Anti Bullying, Time Management, Decision Making and more.
Lessons are taught through interactive workshops, dynamic keynotes and other creative executions designed to educate and empower these young ladies from underserved communities across Long Island.
The event features components for Girlz to not only look good but to feel good as well. The Health and Beauty Pavilion teaches Girlz how to take care of their bodies, apply make-up and design their hair like young ladies with a sense of purpose.
Girlz Talk is the largest gathering of girls and for girls from diverse communities in the Long Island area.
BOYZ N2 MEN
Boyz N2 Men is dedicated to having candid, culturally relevant conversations with young men from diverse, underserved communities across Long Island. The day is designed to educate, motivate and empower the young men while narrowing the information gap that exists in their lives and communities. The day is filled with keynotes, interactive workshops, talkback sessions, career mentorship and a powerful tie-tying ceremony.
National experts, male role models, athletes and mentors presented the boys with culturally relevant strategies to succeed as they transition from boys into men.
Topics cover key issues including: College Prep, Middle School / High School Transitions, Financial Literacy, Dating with Dignity, Police Interaction, Anti-Gang, Self-Esteem, Positive Male Image and more.
Additionally, the young men interact with male professionals at a Mentoring Match-up where they learn about potential career paths.
One of the highlights of the Boyz N2 Men event is the Tied to Greatness Ceremony where older men provide each attendee with a brand new tie and teaches them how to tie it (for many their first) helping to affirm their ability to grow and develop into great men. This represents a powerful moment as many of these young men do not have males in their households and this experience is usually shared between fathers and sons.
Outreach for Boyz N2 Men is done to school districts, youth organizations, church groups and fraternities via social media, flyers and grassroots marketing. Attendance is approximately 250 men and boys from Nassau and Suffolk Counties as well as Queens. Planning for the event is done by a committee of educators, fraternities, youth leaders and professionals working together to pay it forward for the benefit of the Boys.
CONTINUING THE CONVERSATION
Collegeology: College Prep for HS Students
In the fall of 2018, we are enhancing our series with a “Continuing the Conversation” component aimed at College Preparedness. In the fall, youth are invited to participate in sessions that focus on Test Taking Strategies for College Entrance Exams, College Essay Writing as well as Interviewing, Networking, and Application completion.
We named the program Collegeology: College Prep for HS Students and host this day for High School students and parents that will help them navigate the college process. As with all of our programs, in addition to information, we bring cultural relevance which reflects nuance and increases effectiveness and resonance. We are working to bring to Long Island, subject matter experts including college coaches, writing experts and test taking strategists that these youth would otherwise never have access to. Because the youth that we serve are from underserved communities, individually their families are unable to afford these services. By coming together as a community, we are able to expose Youth to these tools that will help them maximize their potential and present their “best selves” as they apply for college.
Book Club with Angela Yee
For the third year in a row, Angela Yee, the host of the nationally syndicated radio talk show “The Breakfast Club” leads an engaging and powerful book discussion. The program is open to middle and high school students. Registration is free but pre-registration is required. Complimentary copies of the book are available on a first-come, first-served basis. The book club aims to engage the students in though-provoking discussions and continue conversations about relevant educational and social issues that matter to young girls.