Dad, I’m Okay

Dad, I’m Okay

Dad, i’m okay

afraid of judgement

By /u/dad_i_am_okay of Reddit

Dad, I’m sorry.

All I said was, “It’s actually not that bad here.” It was a very tinny telephone, so maybe you didn’t quite understand: all I meant was that I liked the hot food, the central heating, and the luxury of a lumpy bed that wasn’t by the side of the road. I meant, “Don’t worry, Dad, it’s not like the movies.” I wanted you to know that I wasn’t about to be shanked. But I guess you heard “I like being in juvie,” so you went nuts.

Dad, if you had asked me over the phone why I did it, I wouldn’t have been able to tell you. Not because I didn’t want to, but because I didn’t know how to explain the hole inside me. Why did I steal that car and put two thousand miles on it? Well, why do people swim? Because we love the water? No. Because we don’t want to drown. And in our hometown, I was drowning, Dad.

It was never about the car, really. The car was just–there. A convenience. And I never really cared about where I was going. All directions were away.

When you flew two thousand miles to retrieve me from juvenile detention, you were worried that this was the start of the end. That some integral part of me had been knocked askew–that next it would be drugs, or older men, or stripping. And I don’t blame you. What were you supposed to think? Your respectful, obedient, introverted, straight-A daughter, who was a virgin and had never tried drugs in her life, who did the dishes every night without complaint, had become a felon literally overnight. Christ, you probably thought I’d gotten brain damage!

 

In retrospect, hey, maybe I was a little brain damaged. Dad, do you know what my greatest worry was that day? My hair. Juvenile detention doesn’t allow hair dryers, you see, and if I don’t blow dry my hair it gets frizzy. While you worried that I was going to start a career in prostitution, I worried that the other inmates thought I was ugly.

Consider all I have done since. I graduated high school as a valedictorian. I have a full ride in college. I still get straight A’s. I’m graduating without debt. I’ve won a prestigious internship. But I am afraid that when you look at me, all you see is a teenager in an ugly orange uniform and frizzy, frizzy hair.

Please look at me, Dad.

I used to think that the worst thing I’ve ever done was running away or stealing that car. Then I thought it was enjoying being caught, because surely I was meant to be suffering in juvie, wasn’t I? But now, I think the very worst thing I’ve ever done was hang up that phone.

So Dad, I’m sorry. Every time I look at you, or hear your voice, or think about you, I am back on the other end of a telephone line, unable to explain to you that I am going to be okay. And I’m sorry if every time you think about me, you still wonder whether I have a screw loose or something.

I’m okay, Dad. But I’m sorry–I just don’t know how to explain that to you.

Letter from Dad

[dad_i_am_okay], I hope you’re settling in to college life and don’t miss [pet’s name], Mom, & the rest of us too much. You are SO capable and can do anything you set your mind to!! Work hard & have fun!!

Love, Dad.

What is #teamGIVING?

#TeamGIVING is about results for non profits

Free JustMy Profile Page, Event Sharing, and Community Content Sharing. Plus Premium Support Options to help organizations reach their goals

justmy features

Join the Fight Against Breast Cancer

#memphisstrides This article is brought to you by The Wendy Thompson Lending Team. More Than A Mortgage! MAKING STRIDES OF MEMPHIS The American Cancer Society (ACS) hosted its Making Strides Against Breast Cancer kickoff breakfast at Memphis Botanic Garden on August...

REGIONAL TALENT PIPELINE DEVELOPMENT: THE AGE OF AGILITY

REGIONAL TALENT PIPELINE DEVELOPMENT:THE AGE OF AGILITYBy Joe Kent - Guest BloggerThis article is being brought to you by HomeTown Home Services, Is it time for a Home Improvement?Sponsored locally by HRO Partners and Jaguar/Land Rover Bluff City, the nation touring...

Music Lineup – Evolve Bank & Trust Cooper Young Festival 2018!

  music lineup evolve bank & trust cooper young festival This article is being brought to you by HomeTown Home Services, Is it time for a Home Improvement?   Join us Saturday, September 15 for a day of music at the biggest party of the summer.  September 15 is the...

Time to #BeAmazing

Share Your Story Today!

We believe there is an amazing story just waiting to be told inside everyone.  Stories that inspire change, ideas, and action.  Some stories are painful, some are fun, and others are life changing.  BeAmazing and share your story today on JustMy!

Like and Share justmymemphis on Facebook Click Now!

Scars

Scars

scars
A reminder of healing

 By Matthew Brewer

Scars….we all have them. Whether the scars result from something physical or emotional, we have all experienced a scar of some kind in our lives. Are physical scars painful? That is debatable. Some have suggested that they still rack of pain months and even years after some painful scar. I have had a few scars in my life. None of the physical scars cause me any pain. When I look at the scar, I do remember what happened, but it does not continue to physically hurt me.

Emotional scarring is so different. The heart is tender, and when it is broken, sometimes the damage seems irreparable. As Christians, we know that God can repair all of our brokenness, but let’s face it….we are still humans, and in our frailty as a human, oftentimes we still hurt. That doesn’t make us less of a Christian. That doesn’t make us less of a Child of God. What that makes us is a real-live human being with human frailty who is not perfect.

As Christians we know that all of the physical and emotional scars of our lives were placed on Jesus as he hung dying for our sins. Every bad thing that could and will ever happen to us, he endured the pain at Calvary. He bore the scars of my life and of your life.

Now looking at a scar, I try not to remember what caused the scar, but rather, I try to remember that healing has taken place. Scars sometimes remind me of times I should have listened but didn’t. Ultimately though, scars are a reminder of the healing that has happened in our mind, body, and soul. Scars will always be with us, and so will the ONE who healed us!

We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; persecuted but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies.
II Corinthians 4: 8-10

Matthew Brewer
Guest Blogger
Matthew Brewer has been in the Memphis area since 2003, and in that time, he has been no stranger to the wonderful southern cuisine found here in the Mid-South.  He graduated from West Liberty State College, received his masters from University of Louisiana at Monroe, and his D.Min from Andersonville Theological Seminary.  He is employed by Shelby County Schools as a PLC Coach, pastors Grace Gathering Church, and in his spare time, does marketing for his Wife, Jennifer’s custom Jewelry Company, Jentegrity Jewelry, located in Cordova.  He enjoys spending time with his wife, quiet evenings at home, dinners with friends, and lots of family time.

See All Articles by Matthew

 

 

Interested In Joining Our Guest Blogger Program?
A JustMyMemphis Club For Non Profit Organizations

What is #teamGIVING?

#TeamGIVING is about results for non profits

Free JustMy Profile Page, Event Sharing, and Community Content Sharing. Plus Premium Support Options to help organizations reach their goals

justmy features

Join the Fight Against Breast Cancer

#memphisstrides This article is brought to you by The Wendy Thompson Lending Team. More Than A Mortgage! MAKING STRIDES OF MEMPHIS The American Cancer Society (ACS) hosted its Making Strides Against Breast Cancer kickoff breakfast at Memphis Botanic Garden on August...

REGIONAL TALENT PIPELINE DEVELOPMENT: THE AGE OF AGILITY

REGIONAL TALENT PIPELINE DEVELOPMENT:THE AGE OF AGILITYBy Joe Kent - Guest BloggerThis article is being brought to you by HomeTown Home Services, Is it time for a Home Improvement?Sponsored locally by HRO Partners and Jaguar/Land Rover Bluff City, the nation touring...

Music Lineup – Evolve Bank & Trust Cooper Young Festival 2018!

  music lineup evolve bank & trust cooper young festival This article is being brought to you by HomeTown Home Services, Is it time for a Home Improvement?   Join us Saturday, September 15 for a day of music at the biggest party of the summer.  September 15 is the...

Time to #BeAmazing

Share Your Story Today!

We believe there is an amazing story just waiting to be told inside everyone.  Stories that inspire change, ideas, and action.  Some stories are painful, some are fun, and others are life changing.  BeAmazing and share your story today on JustMy!
Like and Share justmymemphis on Facebook Click Now!

Homeless VS Homelessness

Homeless VS Homelessness

Homeless vs homelessness

By Butterflyy Allen – Guest Blogger

I am passionate about people. When we know better, we do better. Our opportunities aren’t the same, we tend to judge others according to our lot in life. It is unfair to assume that everyone knows better. Let’s look at the state of homelessness versus being homeless.

Homelessness to me is the chronic state of being without a fixed living arrangement. In my viewpoint, the chronic nature of an individual who seemingly dwells in the streets has more to do with mental illness than financial responsibility. If we look at the shelter situation here in Memphis, we can rightfully conclude that we are lacking understanding and rational thinking. These facilities have put a price on people without the financial and mental wherewithall to secure a nights stay. What kind of debacle have we created? In the minds of those already needing help and assistance we are poisoned as a people.

Homeless to me is being in a position where you are not the issue, with sea captain of your domain. Of course, I am speaking from a biased viewpoint. Having experienced the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in 2OO5, I found myself homeless. No, I did not spend a night out in the dark. No, I did not spend a night without proper shelter, but I was definitely put in a position where I had to rely on someone else for my shelter and it extended beyond my control. Financially, I was incapacitated and unable to secure and maintain my own.

Now back to Memphis and the crisis within. As I drive pass many corridors in the city, I often wonder, where are the instruments for change? There are programs here in the city that are designed to help homeless people, by force or by choice. We have a problem with space and availability, coupled with the economic situation. We are losing the war because we want to focus on the fight, between the haves and the have not’s. Between the two deficiencies of homelessness and homeless. Wherein lies the hope for better.

 

We have facilities, we have government funding, we also have private donations. What we don’t have is the education of both those living in a chronic state of homelessness and those micro- managing the help. Where is the accountability of those overseeing the funding for these facilities? Where is the accountability for those receiving payments from those that are paying, and then telling them that they didn’t pay enough or they’re 2, 3, 4, 5 dollars short and they can stay the night? Where is the accountability for those showing favoritism because of the color of our skin, where is the accountability, what are we lacking, when will we start to do better?

Some may say, how can you help people that don’t want help? First and foremost we have to work on assisting people to see the need for help. Yes, it is a lengthy process, especially when you’re dealing with mental health issues, but requiring finances is the last thing that should be on the agenda. By being an advocate for change, we put our feet to the pavement. Where are the outreach workers as some would say, “foot soldiers”, case management requires coming from behind the desk, where are the hierarchies who avoid this mental health crisis here in Memphis.

I am here for it, I am starting with the Union Mission. 383 Poplar, do you know better or you planning on doing better?

butteryflyy allen

Guest Blogger

Ellen “Butterflyy” Allen currently resides in Memphis, TN, where she is a GirlBoss. With ventures in the arts community as an author and poet, she credits being a native New Orleanian as the foundation for her welcoming nature. Ellen also finds great passion in the many hats she adorns as a writing coach, speaker, entertainment host, blogger, and talk radio co-host. She writes “To Her for Her”, the theme behind BSLinspire/Breaking the Silence through LIterature (the non-profit she founded in 2011). Ellen is also a mother of three and grandmother to three GrandKings.

See All Articles by Butterflyy

 

 

Interested In Joining Our Guest Blogger Program?

Duncan Williams Presents:

It's Happening in Memphis

Benefiting the memphis botanic gardens

2018 
Live at the gardens lineup

  • May 26th - SUMMER SYMPHONY AT THE LIVE GARDEN
  • June 1st - RASCAL FLATTS
  • June 20th - MIDLAND with Trent Harmon
  • June 29th - TRAIN
  • July 12th - BOY GEORGE & CULTURE CLUB with the B52'S
  • July 28th - GLADYS KNIGHT
  • Sept 7th - BIG & RICH

justmy features

Join the Fight Against Breast Cancer

#memphisstrides This article is brought to you by The Wendy Thompson Lending Team. More Than A Mortgage! MAKING STRIDES OF MEMPHIS The American Cancer Society (ACS) hosted its Making Strides Against Breast Cancer kickoff breakfast at Memphis Botanic Garden on August...

REGIONAL TALENT PIPELINE DEVELOPMENT: THE AGE OF AGILITY

REGIONAL TALENT PIPELINE DEVELOPMENT:THE AGE OF AGILITYBy Joe Kent - Guest BloggerThis article is being brought to you by HomeTown Home Services, Is it time for a Home Improvement?Sponsored locally by HRO Partners and Jaguar/Land Rover Bluff City, the nation touring...

Music Lineup – Evolve Bank & Trust Cooper Young Festival 2018!

  music lineup evolve bank & trust cooper young festival This article is being brought to you by HomeTown Home Services, Is it time for a Home Improvement?   Join us Saturday, September 15 for a day of music at the biggest party of the summer.  September 15 is the...

Time to #BeAmazing

Share Your Story Today!

We believe there is an amazing story just waiting to be told inside everyone.  Stories that inspire change, ideas, and action.  Some stories are painful, some are fun, and others are life changing.  BeAmazing and share your story today on JustMy!

Like and Share justmymemphis on Facebook Click Now!

We All Need A Little More Grace – Social Justice

We All Need A Little More Grace – Social Justice

We all need a little more grace

Social justice

By Matthew Brewer – Guest Blogger

This article is brought to you by Krewe of DeJavu Check out their menu!

SOCIAL JUSTICE is a topic that God’s Church can not be silent about.

Yesterday, I had the privilege of sitting down with a local Lutheran Pastor and we spoke about the divisions in Memphis over race and the divisions in the church over various issues. After I left, I really began thinking about these topics. I was raised in a Conservative family, and I have conservative values. However, I was taught to LOVE and RESPECT all of God’s creation! I know there are many divisions within our country, our city, and our churches. So many of these divisions have not risen from salvation issues but personal opinions and convictions. I too have personal opinions and convictions, but I see that it is important to be in dialogue with people who I don’t agree with. This is how I have learned to work together with others to advance God’s Kingdom.

I have had the privilege of being in Memphis 15 years, and in that time I have made friends of all races, religions, and sexual preferences. As an adult in Memphis, I have been able to see from a distance the discriminatory practices of people – not just one race of people, but bigotry and discrimination among the races. I have also seen LOVE between the races. I have seen SACRIFICE between the races. I have seen at times a UNITED FRONT among the races.

The Church has a mission to reach the lost, but it also has a duty to serve the poor, the hurting, and the rejected. We must uphold the Word of God, and we must LOVE. Don’t try to tell someone you love them if you discriminate against them. Don’t tell someone you care about them if they are hungry for food, yet you don’t give them any. Don’t use the phrase “Hate the sin, but love the sinner”- it’s been over used. The ones we are called to reach out to need love and a place to belong. They need to hear about the forgiveness and unconditional love of our Savior. We are not the judge of others. We are all sinners in need of God’s mercy. Grace is a gift. God showed us grace when we were still in our sins. The Church, the people who call themselves Christians must offer this same grace to a hurting world. Let us truly become the hands and feet of Christ, holding true to our doctrine and our beliefs that are grounded in the Word of God, and let us see each other as a neighbor and a child of God! It is my prayer that we will see more and more Christians coming together and offering love and grace! It is my prayer that the spirit of multi-cultural worship will permeate and rain down in the churches in which we serve. It is my prayer that through our differences and differing opinions and beliefs, that we can find a place of grace for one another. Red, yellow, black, white, gay, straight, rich, poor, young, and old- WE ALL NEED A LITTLE MORE GRACE!

936 Florida Street Memphis, Tennessee 38106

Krewe Of DeJavu, and Executive Chef Gary WIlliams, bring you Culture of New Orleans. Stop by Memphis for Creole, Soulfood Vegetarian & Vegan.

HOURS

11-4 M-F
11-5 Saturday
CLOSED SUNDAY

justmy features

Join the Fight Against Breast Cancer

#memphisstrides This article is brought to you by The Wendy Thompson Lending Team. More Than A Mortgage! MAKING STRIDES OF MEMPHIS The American Cancer Society (ACS) hosted its Making Strides Against Breast Cancer kickoff breakfast at Memphis Botanic Garden on August...

REGIONAL TALENT PIPELINE DEVELOPMENT: THE AGE OF AGILITY

REGIONAL TALENT PIPELINE DEVELOPMENT:THE AGE OF AGILITYBy Joe Kent - Guest BloggerThis article is being brought to you by HomeTown Home Services, Is it time for a Home Improvement?Sponsored locally by HRO Partners and Jaguar/Land Rover Bluff City, the nation touring...

Music Lineup – Evolve Bank & Trust Cooper Young Festival 2018!

  music lineup evolve bank & trust cooper young festival This article is being brought to you by HomeTown Home Services, Is it time for a Home Improvement?   Join us Saturday, September 15 for a day of music at the biggest party of the summer.  September 15 is the...

Time to #BeAmazing

Share Your Story Today!

We believe there is an amazing story just waiting to be told inside everyone.  Stories that inspire change, ideas, and action.  Some stories are painful, some are fun, and others are life changing.  BeAmazing and share your story today on JustMy!

Like and Share justmymemphis on Facebook Click Now!

The Memphis Urban League – Pamela Lee

The Memphis Urban League – Pamela Lee

Memphis Urban League

Pamela Lee’s Story

 

This article is being brought to you by The Memphis Urban League, Follow Us in the Countdown to 75!

In my early 20’s I started hanging around family and childhood friends that were drug dealers.  This was in the late 80’s early 90’s. It started off as a glamorous lifestyle, full of fun and fast money. Then in the early to mid 90’s, the hustle became violent and dangerous.  I have plenty of painful memories from that time in my life.  One of the most painful was seeing my lifelong friend with a large portion of his head shot off.

My cousin and 3 of our childhood friends were riding in his drop top mustang.  Several guys approached them as they were pulling up to the house.  The guys were robbers dressed as undercover police with large guns.  When the guys realized that it was a setup, they sped off.  The robbers chased the car, shooting over 40 bullets.  When the car stopped, our friend was slumped over with his brains on the back of my cousin’s shirt, and blood all over the back seat and the floor.  He was shot with an AK-47 several times and died on the scene.  To see his brains out and watch him take his last breath was more than devastating!  This was around the time I realized I needed to make some changes in my life.

I realized I needed to make some changes in my life…

I had 1 child then, my son LaDarius was about 3-4 yrs old. Every weekend all the drug dealers would meet up on our street and have a kind of street party.  One weekend I had my son out in the street with us dancing.  He was having a blast.   My son looked up to me and said “Momma, I wanna be like them when I grow up. I want 2 beepers and a Jerri curl”. I knew exactly what that meant.  He was seeing these drug dealers as role models.  It made him want to be one of them.  That resonated in my soul, and I realized that was not the life I wanted for him.

One day I prayed to God and I said “God, if you are real, show me. I want to know you for myself”.  And just as I asked He did!  He spoke to me concerning my life and said He didn’t create me to be the person I was.  He said He had more for me, but in order for me to receive it, I would have to give up all that I had received from the hustle life.  He said I could not keep anything.  It was a hard choice but I did as God instructed. I had nothing.  I was on welfare, section 8 and food stamps.  While on welfare, I knew that was not the life I wanted to live.  I always wanted to be a businesswoman.

God, if you are real, show me. I want to know you for myself…

I decided to attend school through the Welfare to Work program.  I chose The Memphis Urban League Computer Training Program.  My sister had also attended and spoke very highly about it.  Once there I knew that was the beginning of something great!  Not only did I learn computer skills, but we had to dress professional every day.  I learned business etiquette, how to dress for interviews, how to speak properly, how to properly interview, and how to research the company before an interview, among other things.  I was excited to learn so many new and wonderful skills. This environment fit me, it felt right. Not only did The Urban League help me in my professional life, but I also met one of my best friends there, and we are still friends to this day… she also works for me.

Not long after graduation, I got the job of my dreams in an office.  I got hired at The Postal Employees Credit Union.  This allowed me to not only use my computer training, but my business etiquette training, along with other skills that I received from The Urban League.  I loved that job and worked there for about 10 years.  I knew I wanted more.  Using the research skills I’d received from The Urban League, I started researching and teaching myself about entrepreneurship.  I decided I wanted to own a child care center.

There was no or very little access to the internet back then so I went to the library and researched.  I went to seminars and read newspaper articles and bought books on personal development.  It took me 8 years of research and many rejections before I finally got a yes and bought Cooper Cottage School in the Historic Cooper Young Community.  I am proud to say that I have owned it now for 18 years!!  I have created job security for many throughout the years including my dad (retired), my mom, my sister, and my brother who are all presently employed there.  I give The Memphis Urban League Computer Training Center credit for creating the foundation I needed to acquire my dream.  If I had not taken the opportunity in The Welfare to Work Program and chose The Urban League, I’m not sure where my life’s path would have taken me.

Today, I am a motivational speaker, sharing my life’s journey with women and young people with the hopes of letting them know that all things are possible to them that believe.  If you can believe it, you really can achieve it. I’m living proof.  I encourage them to take those positive opportunities that are presented to them.  Use these opportunities to improve or change their circumstances.

 

If you can believe it, you really can achieve it…

Today I honor God for my entire life’s journey. I’m thankful to Him for all of my experiences.  These experiences molded me and gave me a determination that I may not have had.  These experiences led me to The Memphis Urban League Computer Training Center.  The changes that The Memphis Urban League Computer Training Center extended to me is perpetual.  I am now the mother of 3. I have taught each of my children entrepreneurship.  Today, I’m not only working to create a legacy but also to create generational wealth.

So, I say thank you to The Memphis Urban League Computer Training Center. More importantly, I say thank you to God for all my many blessings and making my crooked places straight.  Because God has blessed me, it is my desire to continue to motivate women and young people beyond their present circumstances and into their greater self.  For them to be all that God has created them to be, and for them to be a living example of how you can change your negatives into positives.

 

Memphis urban league

Pamela lee

justmy features

Join the Fight Against Breast Cancer

#memphisstrides This article is brought to you by The Wendy Thompson Lending Team. More Than A Mortgage! MAKING STRIDES OF MEMPHIS The American Cancer Society (ACS) hosted its Making Strides Against Breast Cancer kickoff breakfast at Memphis Botanic Garden on August...

REGIONAL TALENT PIPELINE DEVELOPMENT: THE AGE OF AGILITY

REGIONAL TALENT PIPELINE DEVELOPMENT:THE AGE OF AGILITYBy Joe Kent - Guest BloggerThis article is being brought to you by HomeTown Home Services, Is it time for a Home Improvement?Sponsored locally by HRO Partners and Jaguar/Land Rover Bluff City, the nation touring...

Music Lineup – Evolve Bank & Trust Cooper Young Festival 2018!

  music lineup evolve bank & trust cooper young festival This article is being brought to you by HomeTown Home Services, Is it time for a Home Improvement?   Join us Saturday, September 15 for a day of music at the biggest party of the summer.  September 15 is the...

Time to #BeAmazing

Share Your Story Today!

We believe there is an amazing story just waiting to be told inside everyone.  Stories that inspire change, ideas, and action.  Some stories are painful, some are fun, and others are life changing.  BeAmazing and share your story today on JustMy!

Like and Share justmymemphis on Facebook Click Now!

The Influence of the Memphis Urban League

The Influence of the Memphis Urban League

The influence of the memphis urban league
An interview with the president/ceo of St louis urban league
By Jerome Robinson
This article is being brought to you by The Memphis Urban League, Follow Us in the Countdown to 75!
Jerome Robinson sits down with Michael P. McMillan to talk about the Urban League and it’s impact on Memphis and the African American Community across the USA.
HOW DID YOU FIRST GET INVOLVED WITH THE URBAN LEAGUE?

So my late Uncle introduced me to the Urban League at 10 years old, he had been the chairman of our board of directors here at St Louis. He said it was the most impactful and significant organization in the black community in America in terms of actually getting the job done of helping out people. He told me that when I got old enough that I should join and become a member and get involved and become an Urban Leaguer for life. He told me to wait so I could buy my own membership with my own money and my own job, so I did that and I joined on my 16th birthday and to his credit he was absolutely right. Later on when I was going to college to get a degree in African-American studies, the Urban League Stepped in along with my University and gave me an academic scholarship. Later, from age 24 until 30, I was on the board of directors of the Urban League and the executive committee and chaired the development committee, so it’s a long long history and I became a life member of the agency.

TELL US THREE THINGS YOU WANT PEOPLE TO KNOW ABOUT THE URBAN LEAGUE?
1. I would say, number one, that in my estimation and what I’ve seen in my lifetime is that the Urban League as an organization is best positioned in this entire country and in Memphis local markets to be the most effective vehicle towards taking the conversation about equality and actually making it a reality through programs and policy advocacy for African-Americans along with other disenfranchised people who need our Assistance.

2. I would also think at this particular critical juncture in the course of American history that there’s no better time to become a part of the Urban League movement than now. Because what we see is that the pendulum of justice and equality is that it does not always swing in the directions that we want it to. So it can swing backwards and people will attempt to take us back to a time where equality and justice and advocacy for those in need is not in the forefront of the conversation. I definitely believe that this is the absolute most important time to be a part of the Urban League movement for those of us who want America to be the great democracy that it can be in terms of everyone having an equal seat at the table and being able to participate and enjoy the American dream.

3. No matter what your call is, no matter what your passion or your purpose is, there is a place for you at the Urban League. So whether you are passionate about education, health care, housing, economic development, black owned businesses, job training, GED, etc., there is some place for you at the Urban League. There’s no need to join another organization, there’s no need to create a new organization, you can channel all of your passion and purpose into the Urban League and potentially you could turn it into your profession; which is what i was blessed to be able to do at the agency.

LETS TALK ABOUT THE FUTURE, WHAT ARE YOU MOST EXCITED ABOUT?
I’m excited about our Outreach and our adjustments for millennials so that each new generation that gets engaged with the agency can leave its stamp, its mark, and its Legacy on the Urban League. When you’ve been around for a hundred years, you have to change to become a part of the current fabric of society. So I’m always excited to get and see young people getting involved and hear what they have to say and how committed they want to be. So I’m excited about that for the future because, quite frankly, that’s the only way that we will survive. We cannot just a live on and talk about what we’ve done in the past hundred years, we have to be relevant to the market, deal with the demand of today, and be prepared for the future.
SPEAK DIRECTLY TO THE AFRICAN AMERICANS, TELL US WHY BECOMING A MEMBER OF THE URBAN LEAGUE TODAY IS SO IMPORTANT.
Well I think it’s more important than ever because everything that we have achieved in this country has been efforts to make the United States live up to what it said on the Constitution. We Proclaim ourselves as the greatest democracy in the history of humanity, and with that being the foundation of our country, how do we create a more perfect union where African-Americans can be treated whole and become a full part of society? This has been an issue that has been going on for obviously centuries, and so for me, the Urban League is best positioned to actualize the conversation and the discussion about equality because we are always the ones that actually create the program’s to give people the job, the scholarship, the GED, the housing, the food, the clothing, of whatever they need.

We have made tremendous stride and made tremendous advancements as a people in this country, but the masses of the black community are still suffering from these enormous disparities in healthcare, education, economics, overall net worth and credit scores, financial empowerment, and so many different things that we see again and again and again. We must as a community all be involved in lifting all of us up so that we can one day get to that point where we don’t sit here still as the ethnic minority. We need to work hard so that one day we can get out of that situation and actually realize full equality, and there’s no better position individually to do it other than us as a people.

AS THE PRESIDENT OF THE ST. LOUIS CHAPTER, WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TONJA HERE IN MEMPHIS?
You are too kind to give me the ability to even give advice. We were actually in the same leadership class, she is very well respected among her colleagues across the country and very well liked and admired for her tenacity, her hard work, and her dedication to the movement. She wants to see the community advanced and she gets people to come there from a tourist attraction standpoint and invest. When she asked me to come I said absolutely, I would be honored to participate and be of some help.

I would just say keep on keeping on, it’s not very profound, but quite frankly this is a very difficult position and it has a huge amount of stress attached to it. There are so many constant issues that come up between the police, community, electoral, and in the government. Bringing the races together, having better race relations, and helping the least of these is important. Even in a Biblical standpoint when we all stand before God on Judgement Day we will not be asked how big our house was, how much money we had, or how much we lived a life of materialism. But Instead will be asked, when I was hungry did you feed me and when i was naked did you clothe me. That’s what Tonja does and the Urban League does and we must continue that work.

justmy features

Join the Fight Against Breast Cancer

#memphisstrides This article is brought to you by The Wendy Thompson Lending Team. More Than A Mortgage! MAKING STRIDES OF MEMPHIS The American Cancer Society (ACS) hosted its Making Strides Against Breast Cancer kickoff breakfast at Memphis Botanic Garden on August...

REGIONAL TALENT PIPELINE DEVELOPMENT: THE AGE OF AGILITY

REGIONAL TALENT PIPELINE DEVELOPMENT:THE AGE OF AGILITYBy Joe Kent - Guest BloggerThis article is being brought to you by HomeTown Home Services, Is it time for a Home Improvement?Sponsored locally by HRO Partners and Jaguar/Land Rover Bluff City, the nation touring...

Music Lineup – Evolve Bank & Trust Cooper Young Festival 2018!

  music lineup evolve bank & trust cooper young festival This article is being brought to you by HomeTown Home Services, Is it time for a Home Improvement?   Join us Saturday, September 15 for a day of music at the biggest party of the summer.  September 15 is the...

Time to #BeAmazing

Share Your Story Today!

We believe there is an amazing story just waiting to be told inside everyone.  Stories that inspire change, ideas, and action.  Some stories are painful, some are fun, and others are life changing.  BeAmazing and share your story today on JustMy!
Like and Share justmymemphis on Facebook Click Now!