Strong Men Strong Leaders

"Today was the highlight of my professional career. We started Strong Men Strong Leaders less than two months ago to recruit and develop the talents of our young people, combat negative narratives and stereotypes of men of color, serve our community, foster healthy athletic competition, and have real conversations about issues and success in our lives and neighborhoods. Today, unified by the bonds we've created, we all proudly wore our sweatshirts- the customized sweatshirts with the names on the back which the young men themselves designed. We dedicated these sweatshirts, "planted a tree", and toasted to our elders. Now, others are seeing our presence and asking to be a part of this. I've seen so much growth and positivity in just seven short weeks. We have bonded as a band of brothers, and while I may be their teacher, I have learned so much from them. I feel blessed, honored, and humbled to be a small part of their lives. They might be younger than me, but I look up to each of them. I'm grateful to my school administration who has supported everything I've done with this initiative, and equally grateful to my mentor for teaching me how to use my own story and the stories of these young men to harness our collective power. I'm grateful to custom ink for helping us to achieve this end. #strongmenstrongleaders " - Sam (Dec 12, 2015)

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