WE'VE EXCEEDED OUR GOAL! PLEASE KEEP SHARING! WE WOULD LOVE NOTHING MORE THAN TO DISTRIBUTE #BLACKJOY KITS TO AS MANY YOUNG BLACK YOUTH AS POSSIBLE!
"Art isn't made for coffee tables, it's made to sustain a people." Kerry James Marshall
Creating, Healing and Joy during covid-19
blackyard believes all Black youth deserve to be at home with enough supplies to allow for them to have moments of creating, joy, and healing.
while many of us are privileged enough to order toys and art supplies to support our own young folks well-being during this time of loss and uncertainty, there are young people, particularly young Black children, who are struggling to access supplies that will allow for them to explore this current time and process what's happening in their family, community, and global world.
WE WANT TO CREATE 300 #BlackJoy Kits! Please help us get there!
Each Kit costs $30.00, including a coloring book designed by a queer Black woman artist, Madam Muse, and math playing cards created by a Black woman educator, Pamela Jones Seda.
the following supplies will be included in each #BlackJoy Kit for Creating, Joy, and Healing: :
Math playing cards
blackyard is partnering with the following local community groups and activists:
Cambridge Rindge and Latin Black Student Union
Reservoir Church, Cambridge MA
Our blackyard Story
ashley is a theatre educator of 20 years, who could no longer live with herself or work in schools steeped in white supremacy and anti Black practices towards Black youth and Black families. blackyard was born out of the Black Lives
Matter movement. Like her ancestors, she created a gathering place, right in her own b(l)ackyard, to center find the ARTs and JOY and for folks to move through difficult conversations about eradicating racism and white supremacy. ashley is a community member of Cambridge for 7 years, a queer Black mother of 2 stunning Black children, a facilitator of learning, someone who believes deeply in Black youth, a singer, an organizer, an aunty, a sister, a friend, and someone who continues to be in radical self transformation, to ensure she's uplifting ALL Black Lives.
blackyard Learning Community, blakcyardLC, began in the hearts and spirits of our ancestors. In 2018, after months of organizing in and around Cambridge Public Schools in support of the Black Student Union and the humanizing of Black youth in Cambridge, blackyard founder, Ashley Herring, decided enough is enough. blackyard was birthed from a desire to see Black youth treated with dignity and given a learning environment that sees and acknowledges them in the fullness of their humanity. It seeks to create an environment that visibilizes white supremacy and how it has manifested in schools, disposing of even the youngest of our Black children. blackyard, sets out to cultivate a learning environment driven by accountability, where young people and those that support them are held in the fullness of their humanity through a
commitment to self work, transformative justice, and humility. Now, alongside community, with a vision developed by the families of the first matriculating cohort, blackyard sets to open its doors in September of 2019.
*Thank you to Cicely Carew, a local Cambridge artist, and Maya Gonzalez for granting us permission to use images they created for the world.
- Janice Cowan
- Stephen Mayo
- Trecia Reavis
- j. merryman
- Kathy Jenkins