Our Club kids enjoying learning new skills and showcasing their talents. When Aliya, a member of our Greater Newark Club, helped to produce a track with program director Bernard Parker, they knew they had created something great.
Through our popular MAVERICK program, Bernard helped teach Aliya about the Philly Heat Genre. Using portable music studios, Aliyah learned how to add kick, a melody sample and a percussion loop to a track. Together they produced the song A Philly Girl that Bernard then passed along to some of his contacts in the industry. After hearing the track, designer Lionne Clothing decided to use the song as part of their online soundtrack for their New York Fashion Week showcase.
Bernard was excited at the opportunity to promote the work of the youth in the program. “I can teach them how to produce just as good as the adults and give them opportunities that many adults never could get. Working with Lionne Clothing was such a great experience because I got to be in the same room with many celebrities who got to hear my music. Now I will be teaching my kids how to produce music for brands which can get them major deals before they turn 18.”
Finding opportunities to recognize the skills and achievements of our youth helps to instill the confidence they need to believe in themselves. Utilizing the networks and connections of our mentors, our Club kids are being equipped with connections and opportunities that will prepare them for what’s ahead. “With each opportunity for me is an opportunity for my teens.” says Bernard.
MAVERICK is a component of the nationwide non-profit, The Music & Youth Initiative, which is part of a larger partnership with Boys & Girls Clubs of America. The Music and Youth Initiative offers music education and mentoring to underserved youth who would not otherwise have access to such resources. The program takes place at the Greater Newark Boys & Girls Club in addition to both Newark Charter High School and William Penn High School. Between the three locations, the program serves 40 participants each week with a goal of growing to serving 100. Participants also receive evidence-based prevention programming supported by the Division of Prevention and Behavioral Health Services.