In order to continue to engage Chicago Time Exchange members, we have decided to participate in the 90-day Challenge, an idea proposed by Edgar Cahn at TimeBanks, U.S.A. The idea is for all the members of the TimeBank to focus their efforts and energy for a 90-day period on one social issue or one project.
The Chicago Time Exchange has decided to dedicate its 90 days to support The Black Star Project’s Saturday University. The Black Star Project is a 16-year-old educational non-profit organization in Bronzeville. They run so many useful programs for the community that include tutoring, mentoring, parent trainings, parent engagement programs, student motivation, job training and entrepreneurship programs, stop the violence initiatives, and many more. Their mission is to eliminate the racial academic achievement gap by helping to rebuild families.
The Saturday University is The Black Star Project’s newest tutoring program. It is an innovative approach to the traditional Saturday school model. Each of the 15 sites (mostly located on the South and West sides) are driven by the community members who volunteer, teach the kids, manage the sites, develop curriculum and lesson plans, and engage parents. The sites are donated spaces usually in churches, community centers, police stations, schools, and office spaces. Each site teaches math, reading, and writing in a culturally-relevant environment. Each site has their own age range, but the Saturday University system teaches students from 5-years-old to adults. Students take a pretest when they register and an interval assessment every 8 weeks. The Saturday University strives to make learning fun, empower community members and parents to take over the education of children, and to improve students’ math, reading and writing skills.
The Chicago Time Exchange can support this unfunded initiative!
Members can help by:
- Researching and writing grants (with support of The Black Star Project’s Development Department)
- Tutoring children at a Saturday University site
- Contacting businesses for financial and material support
- Finding new sites in your community
- Helping with marketing and outreach
- Developing lesson plans and curriculum
- Delivering snacks and materials to Saturday University sites
- Calling parents weekly to remind them to attend Saturday University and to keep them abreast of their child’s progress
- Helping to create parent organizing hubs at each of the Saturday Universities
- Much more! The sky’s the limit!
Contact Jami at firstname.lastname@example.org to get involved!