Last week, our BROTHER program spent time in Baraboo, Wisconsin at Expeditions Unlimited for their annual Rites of Passage trip.
If you haven’t heard, BROTHER (Building Real Opportunities To Help Everyone Rise) is a holistic program that helps African American boys work through a curriculum of key issues related to transition to adulthood. We engage a curriculum that targets the spiritual, mental, and physical well being of our young boys (grades 6-8).
This Rites of Passage trip is a key annual feature of our BROTHER program, as it aims to activate and motivate the hearts and minds of the young men that we invite on the trip to get away from familiar surroundings, to push past real and imagined fears, and accomplish success within a community of young men who reflect them. We hope to expose these young men to new experiences that challenge them physically and mentally. We hope to educate young men on the importance of psychological health. We hope to provide a safe space for young men to be their true selves. We hope to make sure our young men feel loved and know that they belong.
The Rites of Passage trip is made up of a number of key elements, including speakers (who centered on the theme “Who Am I?”, journaling time, reading (including excerpts from Ta-Nehisi Coates), group activities, and a Rites Ceremony, in which tokens are given to symbolize the transition from boys to men.
What a powerful few days for our youth who were able to participate. Thank you to our Director Anthony Ward and all other leaders who made this trip possible!