Going into our first virtual Youth Empowerment Class, we did not know how our kids would be feeling with everything going on around them. The kids were dealing with an extended school spring break, virtual learning, not being able to play with their friends anymore and classrooms being in their living rooms. With all that’s going on, we knew as facilitators of the Youth Program that we had to lead with the power of “Ubuntu.” 

What does “Ubuntu” mean?  “Ubuntu” is a concept in which your sense of self is shaped by your relationships with other people. It’s a way of living that begins with the premise that “I am” only because “we are.” Our students received the message of “Ubuntu” well and the first thing they all wanted to do was to figure out a way to send their appreciation and admiration for all of the essential workers fighting to keep us safe, healthy and fed during this pandemic.

The idea we came up with was to do thank you videos to all the essential workers, in our native tongue. We wanted to thank all the:

  • Health care professionals for providing care for those who need it most.
  • Grocery store employees, working around the clock to keep shelves stocked and people fed.
  • Truck drivers keeping our supply chains running so we can get the food and other resources we need.
  • School support staff and bus drivers delivering meals and ensuring children and families have the support they need.
  • Teachers and other staff, providing online learning for students.
  • All of the other people working hard on our behalf (bus drivers, mail carriers, police officers, firefighters, bank cashiers, farmers, sanitation workers and others.)

On the behalf of the African Leadership Group and Youth Empowerment Group we want to say thank you all! You are the real heroes during these times! Now watch this amazing video from our students.