As we enter the last few days of the year, we want to personally thank you for making our work possible. In the last twelve months, you enabled us to serve over 5,000 youth at 24 DC schools, supporting them to build critical skills in social-emotional literacy, conflict resolution, mindfulness, artistic-expression and harness tools to advance peace and justice in their communities. Together we are striving to transform school cultures and we are creating spaces of joy, healing, and love.
As 2019 draws to a close, we’re proud to look back on a busy fall season full of peace education, artistic expression, and community building. Highlights from the fall include:
Intention Not Detention: On September 9th, we released our newest music video, “Miss Intention,” composed by and featuring OCU's dynamic and inspiring Facilitator and Performance Troupe Director, Princess Best (aka The HipHopMomma). The video kicks off our #IntentionNotDetention campaign to establish Intention Rooms™ as designated alternatives to in-school suspensions. Intention Rooms are safe, trauma-informed spaces to support students to reflect upon and transform behavior. This starts with an intentional, trauma-informed alternative to punitive discipline; one that builds students’ self-esteem, sense of agency, and empowers them to lead the lives they are capable of. Check out this feature on #IntentionNotDetention on NBC Washington. Or, learn more at: www.OneCommonUnity.org/Intention.
World Leaders Listen Up!: Imagine what would happen if young people from all over the world were able to come together to discuss our global futures? That's exactly what happened at our office and Malcolm X Park in Washington, DC on September 27th. Thanks to a special collaboration with Amigos de las Américas and the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), we were able to bring our Fly By Light youth leaders together with 60 youth leaders from Colombia, Ecuador and Palestine for a day of dialogue, drumming, art and dancing. Topics that youth discussed with each other as priorities in their communities included access to education, global climate crisis, paramilitaries, war, domestic violence, government corruption, youth substance use and addiction, sexism, LGBTQ justice, racial justice and ending police brutality.
Mental Health Expansion: In addition to offering our award winning Fly By Light program across all 8 Wards of DC, we expanded our school-based mental health services through the city's School Based Mental Health Expansion program. In addition to our facilitators, we have placed mental health clinicians in 14 public schools across the city to provide a three-tiered continuum of behavioral health support, offering prevention, early intervention and treatment services to our students.
Mother Daughter Dinner: On November 30, our program team, along with Program Facilitator and Performance Troupe Director Princess Best organized a Mother Daughter Dinner at Eastern High School. It was a wonderful evening for creating space for mother daughter connection, discussion, and performances over great food. And this is just the beginning - we have our first ever Mother Daughter retreat day coming up in March so stay tuned and message us if you want to get involved or support!
The Curriculum-Based Support Group (CBSG®) Program: On September 30th, OCU successfully completed a two-year implementation of the CBSG® Program in 11 schools across DC. CBSG isa unique, multicultural, evidence-based preventative intervention designed for students whose high-risk situations - including Adverse Childhood Experiences, attitudes and behaviors place them at elevated risk for future behavioral and health problems including substance abuse, delinquency and violence. OCU established 24 cohorts with students ages 12-18. Students met in confidential, small group settings and were taught a set of essential life skills to help them learn how to cope with difficult family situations, resist negative peer pressure, respect themselves and others, set and achieve goals, and make healthy choices.
Funding Update: This fall, we were so honored to be chosen for a Capital Hill Community Foundation grant, a DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities grant, and a grant through the DC Mayor’s Office on Latino Affairs to support the work of One Common Unity and Fly By Light. In addition, on November 14th we hosted a fundraiser called Elevate Peace an evening to celebrate nearly 20 years of our transformative work. We were so thrilled to come together with so many generous supporters and hear from inspiring speakers and program alumni.
Thank you so much for being a part of the One Common Unity family. Because of you, our work is possible and we invite you to increase your monthly contribution to deepen our collective impact in 2020. Your generosity enables us to support students in all eight wards of Washington, DC to shine their light, reach their full potential, and ignite a community-wide shift towards peace and justice. We are so grateful for your continued support!
Project Reports on GlobalGiving are posted directly to globalgiving.org by Project Leaders as they are completed, generally every 3-4 months. To protect the integrity of these documents, GlobalGiving does not alter them; therefore you may find some language or formatting issues.
If you donate to this project or have donated to this project, you will get an e-mail when this project posts a report. You can also subscribe for reports via e-mail without donating.
Get Reports via Email
We'll only email you new reports and updates about this project.