Dear King Street Center friends,
We condemn the recent murders of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, and mourn the many precious lives lost over the years at the hands of an unjust and racist system. At King Street Center, we’ve been examining our own practices, programs, environment, and integrating this learning into our ongoing strategic plan. While we are not experts and recognize that this is an ongoing listening and learning process, we commit to being loud & proud members of an anti-racist community in which hatred and intolerance have no place.
There is no greater hurt than when a child is judged by the color of their skin rather than the content of their character. You might be surprised at how often I hear from kids, staff, and volunteers being subject to discrimination and bias. I know the look before I even hear their story. The set of the jaw. The hard stare. The tears so close to the surface. I’ve seen this raw expression more times than I can count and it elicits an immediate sense of dread. Because I know a hug doesn’t shake it.
We need to do better.
There’s an avalanche of outstanding resources circulating and our team of staff and volunteers are reading, listening, sharing and most importantly, reaching out to King Street Center kids despite the distance created by the coronavirus pandemic. We look forward to opening our doors this summer to embrace our relationships in person – and to continue providing quality care, enrichment, food, academic support, and opportunity for fun.
This is not a sprint – it’s a marathon. We must continue to engage with the mission of the Black Lives Matter movement – today, next week, month, and year. Thank you for your partnership in this ongoing work.