Brooklyn Alumnae Sponsors Youth Resource Fair 

Submitted by Nicole Duncan-Smith

The Educational Development Committee of the Brooklyn Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated hosted its Annual Youth Resource Fair on Saturday, Dec. 3 at Brooklyn’s historic Boys and Girls High School, the oldest public school in the borough.

The Educational Development Committee, chaired by Alison Best Adams and co-chaired by Aida Crowley, is an umbrella committee composed mostly of education professionals who dedicate their time to curating age-appropriate enrichment programs for the youth of the largest borough in the city.

The purpose of the youth fair was to introduce to the community (students and their parents) the many programs the chapter offers for the personal and social development of young people.

The BKAC currently hosts six programs underneath or in association with the Education Development Program:

The Dr. Betty Shabazz Delta Academy, chaired by Nydia Sutherland, was created in 1996 out of an urgent sense that bold action was needed to save our young females (ages 11-14) from the perils of academic failure, low self-esteem, and crippled futures.

The Historically Black College & University Fair, chaired by June Powell-Beasley and co-chaired by Celeste Douglas, was created in 1983 to expose thousands of NYC students to collegiate life on Black college campuses by introducing them to representatives from dozens of HBCU institutions.

Teen Lift, chaired by Michelle A. Danvers Foust and co-chaired by Germaine Walker, was designed to address the educational, social, and cultural needs of the Brooklyn youth. The goals of the Teen Lift program are to offer 10th – 12th-grade students who attend high school in Brooklyn and/or reside in Brooklyn, opportunities to explore college admission options, the financial aid process, write their personal statement, prepare for college interviews, and the benefits of attending HBCUs.

E.M.B.O.D.I., chaired by Enid Knight and Cecelia Brown, is a program designed to refocus the efforts of the sorority, with the support and action of other major organizations, on the plight of Black males. E.M.B.O.D.I. is an acronym for (Empowering Males to Build Opportunities for Developing Independence).

The Dr. Jeanne L. Noble Delta G.E.M.S., chaired by Gilleyan Hargrove and Nichole Kirkland, has a primary focus on teen girls between the ages of 14-18 and/or in grades 9-12 and to help them develop strong leadership skills.

Jabberwock, chaired by Marsha Furby and Aida Crowley, was created in 1925 and first introduced to the Brooklyn community in 1985 as a cotillion/personal development program designed to raise money for our contestants’ college scholarships and the important work of Delta in the community.

During this rainy day, representatives from these committees (with the exception of E.M.B.O.D.I. and G.E.M.S.) spoke with community stakeholders and their children about each program. The chapter invited its Physical and Mental Health committee and the NCNW to come and speak to the audience, as examples of resources within the community that are also available for adults.

The chapter hosted more than 100 guests at the fair.

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