The Christian Cultural Center’s Cultural Arts Academy Charter School – a charter school of the arts- hosted a homecoming event at their Brooklyn location recently. What was so special about that event was an element that served to raise awareness of the importance of entrepreneurship for those who pursue the arts – especially for children at the primary school level.
The event coordinator, Mrs. Joy Spruill, a Fine Arts graduate herself, who gained first hand experience on how difficult it is for creative people to successfully follow their bliss through entrepreneurship, was right on target with this vision. “Far too many African Americans lack the knowledge or financial soundness to even consider this as an option. It is my intention to surround our students with familiar faces that have accomplished the challenge of owning their own business. It is my hope that through exposure that entrepreneurship will no longer seem so foreign to our scholars.” Mrs. Spruill said of the motivation behind this event.
Worthy of note and a great delight, is the fact that a kindergarten vendor participated as a seller of lemonade – which not surprisingly – sold out before long. “She exemplified one who demonstrated to her peers, that regardless of age, one can acquire an understanding and an interest at all different levels that can lead to a successful experience.” Mrs. Spruill added.
I was quite flattered when asked to participate as the featured vendor of an event that would serve to plant the seeds of entrepreneurship in the minds of our children. Kudos to Principal Laurie Midgette for working with Mrs. Spruill to bring this vision alive! It was a delight to be able to engage in meaningful conversations that were initiated by these young and curious minds. I was told that I had been selected as a featured artist/ entrepreneur, not only because of my “beautiful works of art” but because of my “willingness to give back to causes such as the arts, cancer, children, etc.”
“Character development is one of the main missions of our school. Thank you, Madona Cole Lacy for your example of good character.” -Joy Spruill-
It is fitting for me to end by saying it was indeed a pleasure to execute my duty as a “Good Villager” and join the church, school, home and community as a whole, to creatively empower our future leaders. The Cultural Arts Academy Charter School can count on me to collaborate with their creatively supportive spirit in the future. The warm embrace I received from Principal Midgette, Mrs. Spruill and her husband Ron Spruill, and others I encountered, will forever remain with me, and serve as a catalyst that adds to fueling the connection of the dots of my creativity!
I believe that much encouragement should be given to community-generated initiatives aimed at encouraging self-sufficiency that can be realized by practitioners of the arts. This is a start to acquainting our children with the many elements that make for successful entrepreneurship.
What innovative ways to embrace and steer young minds toward success have you entertained or implemented? Please share.
This lovely display by the Joy Spruill team of an almost life-like photo and bio was as humbling as it was amazing! My husband, James Lacy, and I extend our gratitude to everyone who made this a special experience for us.
Since I haven’t quite decided on a suitable term to adequately capture how I feel, I will settle for one that conveys the most predominant feeling right now. It is with humility that I embrace this time of my life, to reconnect with the world, and make a deliberate and significant stride toward normalcy since the recent passing of my father. As one who prides herself on being a perpetual student of life’s lessons, I must acknowledge a major loss such as this, as one which I have also viewed within the context of the psyche of Family Adult Caregivers around the world. I share your loss and feel your pain, even as I ‘hear’ my Papa urging me to keep the ball rolling, and to never lose sight of my goal! The drive to keep going should never leave us! I, not unlike a host of other adult children of the recently departed, have a lot to be thankful for when I take stock of the rich legacy my father left behind, not just for me, but for many others around the world. I feel ever so blessed!
Getting Back On Track
With the support of my Board, Program Director, Volunteers and Well-Wishers; I am looking forward to the upcoming Your Time For Community Networking Soiree – an opportunity for Long Island’s high school students, as well as current college-bound high school graduates, to experience an intergenerational professional and social relationship with a diverse pool of male and female community role models representing the arts, business & and professional world, academia, human services and local politics.
All Participants can look forward to interacting with an impressive line-up of motivational presenters and Resource Persons which includes current college students, professors, medical doctors, community activists and faith based leaders, mental health practitioners, and public officials – all of whom care about the well-being and academic success of our youth.
Other highlights include: lunch, entertainment, high tea, beauty and heath activities, giveaways and more!
If you have a burning desire to touch the lives of our youth in a special way, and would like to be a part of this initiative, kindly contact us.
For more details please visit our website: www.yourtime4liny.org
Most people will tell you they do not need to be told how to parent their children. While that may be the case, it is not unusual to find that these same parents have been wired to respond, more so, to the negative or destructive behaviors of their children than to the positives. What is unfortunate about zeroing in only on the negative, is that we lose out on the opportunity to provide a serious empowering process that our children can take with then as they step out into the world to become their own persons. By only responding to the negative, we also teach them not to acknowledge others who are doing their best to be productive citizens. These parents assume the posture that “this is what is expected of them, I don’t have to fuss over them for that”.
Luckily for us, we are now living in a society in which an inordinate amount of good and tailored options are offered to those who care to explore ways that do not keep them stuck at the “children are supposed to ‘do as I say’, and the ‘do because I said so’ culture”.
It is with all that I have said in mind, that I ask you to accommodate me while I publicly declare the elation and pride that I feel as the mother of Samuel Branch, of whom the article speaks. I am not only proud of my son for his passionate resolve to be the best that he can be in the field of graphic design, I am also proud of his friends who were at his senior show. Kudos to the students whose enthusiasm and sensitivity made the art installation process very much a part of the show. It was such a heart-warming experience to witness this! I must also congratulate Katie Webb, for an article so well-written. It is obvious that she herself is making full use of her education at Hofstra. It is clear that the parents have played a major role in making these young adults so worthy of the praise and admiration I so freely give. Congratulations to the parents!
I suspect there are many takes on Mommy and Daddy blessings out there. Please feel free to share yours.
Last, but not least, I must acknowledge my husband, Samuel’s Dad, without whose ‘One James’ peach cobbler, the show would not have been complete.
FORM: Sam Branch’s graphic design senior show
Posted by hofstra chronicle on Saturday, December 14, 2013.
By Katie Webb Arts & Entertainment Editor
Vibrant, color-blocked, mosaic images composed of 35 sheets that are 11 inches by 17 incheson the walls of the this week, Dec. 9–13. The , “Vector Variegations,” is the senior art show of fine arts major Samuel Branch.
Congratulations to Devon Harris, motivational speaker, author and founder of the Keep On Pushing Foundation, on being honored for his community service by New York’s Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano at the Caribbean American Festival on Saturday, June 15, 2013.
Mr. Harris, also of Jamaican Bobsled fame, has for the past two years been an avid supporter of Long Island’s non-profit, Your Time For Creative Empowerment, Inc. and the My Time Has Come Program. These long island based programs have been served well by Mr. Harris’ captivating and spirited motivational presentations to parents and youth.
Also honored were:
Mr. Ron Clahar – Principal of Pat -Kam School and Early Childhood Center
Ms. Lorna Lewis – Superintendent of the Plainview Old Bethpage CSD & Adjunct Professor at Hofstra University
Mr. Lennox O. Price – Consul General of Barbados to New York.
We congratulate all of these honorees for the exemplary work they are doing in their respective fields and communities.
Your Time For Creative Empowerment, Inc. engages in activities designed to empower youth & families by providing tools for handling the challenges and pitfalls of life in the 21st Century through the use of the arts, fashion and culture alongside creative personal development and behavioral modalities.
My Time Has Come Program is an art-related cultural and social enrichment enterprise which offers workshops to teachers, students and community organizations. My Time Has Come Program promotes tolerance to racial, cultural, ethnic and generational differences; fosters a sense of belonging, accomplishment and pride gained from the creation of well executed culturally inspired works of art; and develops skills in the use of hand-crafted textile designs and contemporary, multi-cultural visual arts techniques.
Author: Madona Cole-Lacy, MA Ed.
Founder: Your Time For Creative Empowerment, Inc.
Program Director/ Facilitator: My Time Has Come Program
Saturday’s event echoed my words, “Come dance with me and I will make you
Fishers of Men.”
I saw them wonder.
I saw their flicker of anticipation.
I saw their shadows fade.
Their opened minds,
Freedom of speech.
I saw them – comfortable within themselves,
Relaxed in their huddles.
They spoke of the “who” they could become.
They focused on self, their awakening.
And wowed themselves by discovering
That yes, there were gifts sealed within.
Yes, they could ignite the spark,
Yes, they could take flight,
Yes, they could become……………….
F. Bell (4/22/13)