April 3, 2018
Welcome to Beacon of Light, our new book project created to celebrate our 20 years of impact in the community. It is my pleasure to share bits of our journey by featuring the real issues and people touched in this book, as we act on our mission to improve the social and economic status of individuals departing from poverty.
Launching this blog on the eve of the 50th anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.’s assassination is divine to me. I was 4 years old when I first met my hero while watching his funeral. Backwards right? You normally meet your hero first, and then they die. But, as a child born in the civil rights 60’s, MLK’s death was a paramount event that opened my eyes, touched my heart and sparked my sense of justice. Today, I am well aware that I do this work in a larger context, as a part of bringing about love and justice to individuals in need.
Beacon of Light, the name my good friend Kristi gave to uu when describing our work in the community – is a collaboration between myself and Amir Saadiq, photographer. On March 22, 2018, Amir, walked into our social enterprise, one rainy morning, offering to “capture our work.” I thought to myself, how did he know I wanted to do this? How did he know I’ve always wanted to highlight our story? Bring light to the beautiful women I’ve served over the years? Rewrite their narratives? That’s how life works right, think about that think long enough and it comes to pass.
It is my hope that through Amir’s photos and my words, you will not only learn about our story but you will “feel,” our story. Beacon of Light will be partially unveiled at our Mother’s Celebration on May 6th, 2018 and briefly shared on our social media, as we bring it to life. It is our hope that you enjoy and appreciate our story.
With love, Tracey, founder urban university