So we’re down to five days until Saturday’s 100 kilometer bike ride.
In just about half an hour, I’ll be heading out to meet 10 young performance artists who will be joining me for part of the event.
The performers all belong to Kuumba Lynx, the hip hop youth organization on whose board I am honored to serve. KL, as it is commonly known, is the second of the organizations I am featuring during the countdown.
Founded in 1996 by three Chicago Public School graduates who saw a hole in arts programming they wanted to fill, Kuumba Lynx has transformed hundreds, if not thousands, of young people’s lives.
Co-directors Jaquanda Villegas and Jacinda Bullie have created and cemented a safe space for young people of all backgrounds and parts of Chicago to come together and express themselves as they are. This would be impressive enough in its own right, but is even more so when one considers that the home base of America’s first black president remains one of the nation’s most segregated cities.
At this point, some of the teaching artists at Kuumba Lynx are young people who have come up in the organization, gone off to college and returned home to give back to those who nurtured them during their formative years.
Like many non-profits, Kuumba Lynx has found the current economic climate challenging, to say the least. The group has taken another blow recently as Bullie was hit during a bike ride and is at home recovering from the injuries associated with that accident.
We welcome anything you can do to support KL, whether by attending an event, spreading the word about the bike ride or making a donation to this remarkable organization.