Over the past several weeks, as I’ve watched my family, my neighbors, and my colleagues try to make sense of the saddening and confounding state of race relations and inequality in our nation, I’ve often found myself at a loss for words. That’s okay, because the last thing we need right now is more words. To build a better society, we must act. We must decide to advance a shared set of values that recognizes our shared humanity.
At KID Museum, everything we do is driven by our values: Curiosity, Creativity, Collaboration, and Compassion. We work every day to help young people become curious, creative, collaborative, and compassionate problem-solvers, to empower the next generation with the skills to invent a better future. We activate young people as difference makers who care about their world, their environment, and their neighbors. We actively cultivate an environment of inclusiveness that welcomes kids of all backgrounds and abilities. We partner with public schools and community organizations to ensure that students who might otherwise be overlooked or left out of transformative maker and STEM learning experiences are first in line to benefit from our programs.
I believe that we can and must do even more. It’s not enough to have closed our doors in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement. With incredible commitment from our full leadership team and the support of our board, advisors, partners, and supporters, we are committed to ensuring that our kids see the adults who are leading the way at every level of our organization as real champions for diversity, equity, and inclusion.
Here’s what we are doing right now to expand our reach in the community, focused on making it a summer of learning for more diverse young people:
Make it! Summer School with MCPS: This summer, we are partnering with MCPS to serve every 3rd through 5th grader in our county’s 27 Title I schools, delivering weekly virtual learning experiences that will help us flatten the curve on learning loss for the kids most at risk of falling behind. This program will reach an estimated 2,000+ students with live instruction led by our Maker Educators and teachers from our partner schools.
Make it! Summer Camp Scholarships: We have set aside one out of every three of our summer camp registrations for kids from low-income families through scholarships, and are working with community organizations that serve diverse student populations to ensure that the kids who need it most are first in line to benefit.
What’s clearer to me now than ever is that we won’t see meaningful change in our society until we start to change how we interact in our families, in our neighborhoods, and in our broader communities. It all starts with opening our hearts wide to build relationships across differences. You can help us do this by donating to our Make it! Summer Camp Scholarship fund, and we hope you will stay on this journey with us.