April 2018 Edition
"At the end of your life you will never regret not having passed one more test, not winning one more verdict or not closing one more deal. You will regret time not spent with a husband, a friend, a child or a parent."
Celebrating the Life of Barbara Bush
Houston's First Lady of the United States
The Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery recognizes the life of Barbara Bush with a photograph by Diana Walker taken in 1989.
Admired for her candor and down-to-earth approach to public life, Bush enjoyed considerable popularity as the nation’s First Lady during the presidency of her husband, George H.W. Bush (1989–93). Just 16 when she met the future president in 1941, she married him four years later and embarked on a life that would include raising six children, one of whom, George W. Bush, became the 43rd president. During her tenure as First Lady, Bush championed efforts to combat illiteracy. In 1989, she established the Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy and later directed proceeds from the publication of Millie’s Book—a behind-the-scenes look at White House life from the perspective of the Bush family’s beloved springer spaniel—to fund literacy initiatives. The First Lady and Millie appear together in this photograph, which was taken on the White House grounds.
On April 18th, MBK Houston was a featured partner of the Houston Public Library’s “Groomed for Literacy” program on Channel 11 evening news. The news feature spotlighted the legacy of the late Barbara Bush through the Barbara Bush Literacy Foundation. “Groomed for Literacy” aligns to MBK Houston’s Milestone 2 (reading by 3rd Grade) and Milestone 3 (graduating school academically able) by aiming to close the literacy gap for underserved youth, with specific emphasis on young boys of color and promote a love for reading by expanding access to quality books in communities identified as having high populations of individuals with low literacy, low income and low access to quality books. The program supports placement of Little Free Libraries stocked with books in barbershops.
In The News & Updates
African American News: The Omowale Story
One of our beloved community involvement coordinators Omowale Lithuli Allen is deeply rooted in the community doing work under Milestone 6 (Reducing Crime and Violence and Providing a Second Chance) was featured in the April African American News.
“The whole phenomena of men abandoning their families, intercommunity random and gratuitous violence that’s taking place in our communities – this is something that government can help with, but can’t solve. It’s something that we have to do ourselves. I want to applaud all of the efforts that’s taking place for mentoring and empowering of boys and girls. All of these efforts that are trying to break this Jim Crow reincarceration of so many people of Color. But at the same time, most of the deficiencies that we find in the general society start in the family. The ruin of a nation begins in the homes of its people… We have to correct the rot and corruption that we have internally in our own communities, until we do that, we are constantly are going to be placing an anvil on our backs. We must air some of our dirty linen out and begin to address some of our internal deficiencies.” -Omowale Lithuli Allen
From sitting down as a child in his living room watching the funeral of Emmett Till; to recounting the political assassinations of: Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., John F. Kennedy, Robert Kennedy, Medgar Edwards, Malcolm X; to recalling the brutal murder of Carl Hampton by HPD officers in the 70’s; Omowale Lithuli Allen reminisced of the pivotal events that transformed the way that he came to understand social systems at an early age. During an exclusive interview, the international and national human rights activist and veteran of the struggles for peace, justice and democracy, took [Rebecca S. Jones from African American News] on a mental historical ride which will never be forgotten.
Walmart Foundation Invests Nearly $250K in Cities United Roadmap Academy
Walmart Foundation announced a nearly $250,000 investment in Cities United’s Roadmap to Safe, Healthy & Hopeful Communities Academy Planning Labs. Cities United joins 11 other finalists who are all implementing solutions to the nation’s most pressing challenges and exploring innovative approaches to reach diverse communities who persistently lack equal access to opportunity
Cities United supports a growing, national network of 122+ mayors committed to working with their communities to create solutions to cut the homicide rate of young Black men and boys in half by the year 2025. Cities United’s Roadmap Academy partners with mayors and city leaders from across the country to accelerate their comprehensive public safety plans that will establish safer, healthier and more hopeful cities for everyone. The mayors involved in Cities United bring together all corners of the community—city agencies, businesses, faith leaders, public safety officials, community members and young people most impacted by violence—to implement a comprehensive strategy to countering violence.
Building a Community of Practice
Mayor Turner's #FamilyFunDay
Wainwright Elementary Beautification Project/Earth Day Celebration
COOP Campout Spring Break Brazos Bend Park 3/12/18
End of the School Year Mobile Food Drops
Y2K Enrichment 2018 Easter Hunt
Letter of Appreciation
"In the face of diversity and inequality, I believe it is the responsibility of those able bodied to help build resiliency and empowerment in our youth. I myself aim to build a bridge between today's youth and the power of knowledge particularly emphasizing the importance of self-respect, ambition and love amongst minority adolescents. I am very pleased to hear about the successful work contributed to My Brother's Keeper towards the fight against education disparities and promotion of community empowerment." -Antoneshia Stewart
TX Symposium: Empowering the Next Generation
Houston Health Department delegates from the Bureau of Youth and Adolescent Health staff (Katherine Caballero, Tylynn Preston, Dr. AJ Rosario, and Shadawn McCants) attended the Texas Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy's 7th Annual Symposium held in Austin, Texas, April 16-18, 2018 – Empowering the Next Generation! The attendees focused on how to create more opportunities for Texas youth, empower them and help them grow and learn, with one ultimate goal – equipping young people with the tools they need to create a successful future for themselves, their peers and their future families.
Here's a fun fact: 2,000 steps equal approximately one mile! So get moving today! Walking is a great way to help reduce the risk of coronary heart disease, diabetes, certain cancers, and more. So grab your shoes, set your path and #GoWalkHouston! It's about you and your health! See how your city walks at http://bit.ly/GoWalkHou
HHD Harvey Heroes Nominees: Go BYAH!
MBK Houston Milestone Snapshots
Milestone 1 Lead: Antoinette Montgomery
The Chief Administrator of the Early Head Start and Head Start Programs and Organizational Support for AVANCE-Houston is Antionette Montgomery. She has been with AVANCE-Houston since July, 2000, and assumed her current role January, 2017.
Antionette has worked in the field of social services and education for the last 25 years, and is a Licensed Master Social Worker (LMSW). Antionette is dedicated to supporting underprivileged children and their families, and specializes in providing direct services, as well as program oversight and management.
Holding both a bachelor’s degree in Sociology from Louisiana Tech University and a master’s degree in Social Work from the University of Houston, Antionette will earn her Doctorate of Education (Ed.D.) from Nova Southeastern University in 2018.
Antionette is originally from Little Rock Arkansas. In her spare time she volunteers with a local high school’s college readiness program. She serves as a mentor to students and organizes educational presentations for at-risk students transitioning from high school to college.
Houston Basics: Explore through Movement & Play
Parenting is best when you get back to the basics. Please share these videos with someone you know who has children or works with children. Let's work together to turn unintentional micro-aggression to micro-impressions!
To view more Houston Basic videos click here.
Milestone 2 Lead: Mary Wagoner
Help a Young Reader Shine! Become a Volunteer!
Read Houston Read is a program designed to support Houston ISD's Literacy By 3 movement, which aims to have every child reading on grade level by the end of third grade. This is part of a community-wide effort to reduce the cycle of low literacy in Houston.
HISD currently partners with over 50 elementary schools in their district and each campus needs approximately 5 volunteers for each shift. The dates and times vary per campus. Help make an impact in a child's life by signing up to be a mentor for Read Houston Read! To sign-up for a shift, click the button below.
For more information, contact Carley Colton at firstname.lastname@example.org.
BBBS: I Love My BIG!
Big Brothers Big Sisters partners with parents/guardians, volunteers, and donors to provide children facing adversity with strong and enduring, professionally supported one-to-one relationships that changes lives for the better, forever. Our vision is that all children can achieve success in life. Two of our mentors were matched and met with their "littles" at Bruce Elementary.
LITTLE Jadrien Hamilton with his BIG Quotasze Williams
"I Love My" Button
A button created for the LITTLES
LITTLE Keniyah with her BIG
Milestone 3 Lead: Margaret Rodriguez
A Celebration of Collaboration
MBK Houston was highlighted on page 12 in the 5 year report for the Center for School Behavioral Health and a letter from Mayor Turner commending the 37 recommendations that guided our work. Our Public Health Education Chief Kristi Rangel shares her experience below:
"After we drafted the framework for the My Brother's Keeper (MBK) Houston System of Care, we used the Center's 37 recommendations as the measuring stick for whether we were on track for designing a model that would make a real systemic difference in a school setting. There is lots of talk about the need for social and emotional support for students, but very little conversation about the components that must be put in place within a school. The Center's 37 recommendations provide direction for all components that must be in place for there to be real support for some of our most vulnerable students and their families. There is no need for guess work. There is no time for guess work becase real lives hang in the balance."
Milestone 4 Lead: Dominique D. Calhoun, Esq.
Dominique D. Calhoun serves as the Director of Government and Community Relations for Texas Southern University. As an executive at the institution, Calhoun coordinates and implements the university's local, state, and national legislative and advocacy efforts. In addition, Calhoun works to cultivate and maintain relationships and develop strategic partnerships with Houston area and national non-profits, chambers of Commerce, and other public and private stakeholders.
Prior to joining TSU, Calhoun served as a staff member for Senator Borris L. Miles and Mayor Sylvester Turner (during his tenure as a member of the Texas House of Representatives).
Dedicated to improving the lives of all Texans and citizens throughout the country, Calhoun has contributed his legal knowledge as a board member to assist a number of non-profit entities, including - Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc., 4B Sales Tax Corporation of Wichita Falls, Constitutional Rights Center of Texas, National Bar Association, Emerging 100 Black Men of Houston Metropolitan, and Houston Young Lawyers Association. In recognition of his past contributions, he was named to the inaugural class of Wichita Falls's 20 Under 40 and acknowledged as one of the Top 50 Black Professionals and Entrepreneurs of Houston.
Calhoun is a graduate of Thurgood Marshall School of Law located in Houston, Texas, and a two-time graduate of Midwestern State University ("MSU") located in Wichita Falls, Texas, where he earned a Bachelors of Science and Masters in Business Administration.
Milestone 4 Co-Lead: Michael O. Adams, Ph.D.
Since his tenure at Texas Southern University, he has worked to propose and develop new programs in Public Administration and Political Science. He has lectured, presented, and chaired task forces, regarding major challenges in immigration, homeland security and safety, foreign relations and policy, e-governance, information technology, voting rights and much more.
He volunteers as a political and educational consultant, and is an avid speaker, serving on a plethora of panels and speaking on various topics as a representative of the University.
Ivy Educational and Charitable Foundation
TeamUp: Chevron Fun Run Planning
Teamup: Discovery Day at Skeeters Game
TX Certified Community Health Workers Class of 2018
If you know anyone between the ages of 18-30 years who would like to participate in the Fall class to become a certified community health worker
or are an employer needing to hire Texas Certified Community Health Workers, then please contact: Christine Barron at email@example.com.
Milestone 5 Lead: Karen Bailey
Circle of Men: Harrisburg Workforce Unit
Bank of America Summer Youth PAID Internship
Come Build with HBI and OBO
HBI is seeking qualified individuals who want to take the next step in their careers to build and shape the lives of future residential construction professionals. If you have a foundation in the trades and/or vocational instruction, we want to hear from you.
Available Instructor Positions
We have an immediate need for an instructor to teach Carpentry at our Houston, Texas program.
Qualified individuals will have a high school diploma or equivalent plus at least five years of experience in the trade(s) he or she will teach. Applicants must also have a passion for and the ability to work with a wide-variety of traditionally under-served student populations including youth, adults and veterans. All positions require a valid state driver's license and satisfactory completion of a criminal background screening.
HBI is a national leader for career training in the building industry. Through certification programs, mentoring pre-apprenticeships and job placement services, HBI prepares its students-including at-risk and under-served populations such as youth, veterans, transitioning military personnel, ex-offenders and displaced workers-with the skills and experience they need for successful careers in the building industry.
avenue is hiring!
- Single-Family Home Repair Coordinator
- Disaster Recovery Project Lead and Volunteer Coordinator
- Finance Director
- SBP In-Office Supply and Logistics Coordinator
- Contract Home Repair
- HomeOwnership Center Classroom Assistant
To apply, please submit a cover letter, resume, and three professional references to: Employment@avenuecdc.org
Milestone 6 Lead: Mike Schneider
He was elected to preside in the 315th Juvenile District Court in 2006. His victory came months after Texas Governor Rick Perry appointed him to the bench. Voters overwhelmingly returned Mike to the bench in 2010 and 2014.
Mike is a graduate of St. Thomas High School, Texas A&M University and the South Texas College of Law. He was also a visiting student at the University of Texas School of Law.
Mike is a tireless advocate for children, families and justice. Since taking the bench, he has been praised for his skillful and fair handling of complex high-profile cases, aggressive protection of taxpayer dollars and thoughtful leadership on thorny juvenile justice issues.
Mike has also fought to improve the chances of success for abused children in prolonged foster care situations and earned praise for his leadership in fighting human trafficking by creating a renowned court for young girls pulled into the dangerous world of the sex exploitation. Mike also started Harris County’s first juvenile drug court in 2010.
Clean and Green Program
In lieu of a jail sentence, the Clean and Green diversion program allows eligible non-violent offenders to clear their criminal records by cleaning up Houston’s waterways. Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg said prosecutors will decide who is eligible for the program. Defendants facing charges of any violent crime cannot participate. Sheriff Ed Gonzalez said he sees many benefits to the program, like freeing up jail space and reducing recidivism.
“To us this is a no-brainer,” said Gonzalez. “We operate the largest jail complex in the State of Texas – the third largest in the entire country – and, in fact, right now we are pretty much at capacity.” The program will also cut costs. “This helps saves some taxpayer dollars that would otherwise go into a costly incarceration system or a very costly prosecution system,” said Gonzalez.
The Harris County District Attorney’s Office estimates $240,000 in yearly benefits from manual labor through community service. Bureau Chief and Executive Director of My Brother’s Keeper (MBK) in the City of Houston said, the Texas Conservation Corps and Juvenile Diversion Program that put young offenders to work to offset their offense in the community while linking them to career opportunities as well as provide grounds for potential expunction services. Great collaboration and MBK Houston is proud to support the program because it aligns with MBK Milestone 6 Reducing Crime and Violence and Providing Second Chance Opportunities!
Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Action (JJDPA) Coalition
- A nationwide juvenile justice planning and advisory system spanning all states, territories, and the District of Columbia;
- Federal funding for delinquency prevention and improvements in state and local juvenile justice programs and practices; and
- The operation of a federal agency, the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, which is dedicated to training, technical assistance, model programs, and research and evaluation, to support state and local efforts.
L.E.A.D. program meets with District Attorney's Office
The Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion (LEAD) program continues to develop with 2 recent meetings with the District Attorney’s office. The Juvenile Division of the DA’s office will be reviewing the list of felony offenses that will be eligible for the LEAD program. Since some felony charges are only felonies because they occur on a school campus, the DA’s have agreed to add them to the list of eligible offenses. The DA’s office hopes to refine the list of eligible offenses and allow the HISD -PD complete discretion to refer students without contacting the DA’s Intake Division.
19 years since Columbine. Here's how we can prevent gun violence.
Montgomery's new lynching memorial
Montgomery’s strengthening status as the epicenter of the United States’ racial reckoning makes sense when you peel back the layers of the city’s history. That it was the first capital of the Confederacy and the home of the pivotal black bus boycott is well known. But fewer people are aware that Montgomery was a thriving slave market because of its proximity to the Alabama River, or that the city’s population was two-thirds enslaved people in 1860, or that the global investment bank Lehman Brothers began in Montgomery by profiting from the slave trade.
Photos Courtesy: Sharifa Charles
“It was a city shaped by slavery. We had one of the highest lynching rates in the region. Then of course the centrality of the civil rights era. And now Alabama has one of the highest incarceration rates in the country. … I don’t think there’s a community that can claim more appropriateness for telling this history than this one.” -Bryan Stevenson, Equal Justice Initiative president
Youth Violence Prevention Workshop Recap
Cinco De Mayo Family Fun
Friday, May 4th, 5-6:30pm
6001 Golden Forest Drive
Grand Re-opening Celebration: Scenic Woods Library
Saturday, May 19th, 9am-1pm
Houston, TX 77016, USA
The Houston Public Library has several events for the month of May! The Library will continue their Living Room series, which serves as a time and place for neighbors to gather and hold conversation over good food and fond memories.On Saturday, May 5th, the Moody Neighborhood Library will celebrate Cinco de Mayo from 10:30 am-1:00 pm. The Jungman Neighborhood Librarywill celebrate Indo-American Heritage Day on Saturday, May 12th from 12:00 pm-4:00 pm.
Come celebrate children's books with Houston Public Library! The Children's Book Celebration will be at the Barbara Bush Literacy Plaza on Saturday, May 19th from 11:00 am-3:00 pm. There will be a ton of activities for children and author Nathan Hale will be in attendance.
The Scenic Woods Regional Library will reopen on Saturday, May 19th. The grand opening will be from 10:00 am-12:00 pm and the Houston Public Library will debut TECHLink, the first digital library in Houston. Volunteers will assist with the staff with the press conference and other celebration activities. If you want more information about the event, contact Marjorie Gonzalez at firstname.lastname@example.org. To sign up to volunteer, click the button below.
Lift Off Houston Events
Monday, May 21st, 6:30-7pm
6200 Pinemont Drive
School Safety Summit
Monday, May 14th, 8am-4pm
7145 West Tidwell Road
Join us for this free one-day summit as we discuss pertinent school safety topics such as mental health, human trafficking, internet crimes, police-student interactions and more!
The summit is open to school-based law enforcement, school administrators, school staff, and community partners with interest in school safety.
Send YOUR Submissions to MBKHOUSTON@HOUSTONTX.GOV!
All submissions must be submitted No Later than the Monday before distribution and will be reviewed by a team member and notified of submission approval.