Insight News

Aug 03rd


We must teach our children about gun violence

We must teach our children about gun violenceAs parents we teach our children not to speak to strangers, to look both ways before crossing the street, not to use drugs and other common sense practices. But we don’t teach them how to avoid being injured or killed by gun violence.

Homicide is the leading cause of death for African American males 15 to 24 years of age. Ninety percent of these young boys/men are killed with firearms. And gun violence is popping up all across the Twin Cities. Recently, a 14-year-old boy from Hastings Middle School who brought a .22 caliber loaded handgun to school; a 16-year-old Red Lake Senior High boy killed his family and proceeded to the high school to open fire and killed and injured 21 persons before turning the gun on himself. Two 17-year-old Somali boys shot three persons in a botched robbery. Minneapolis is not immune to this national epidemic of gun violence. Our youth are risking their lives, endangering others and facing years of incarceration, paralyzing injuries and violent death.

Twin Cities marks 25th anniversary of Juneteenth Celebration

Twin Cities marks 25th anniversary of Juneteenth CelebrationAs it celebrates its 25th anniversary, the local Juneteenth Celebration continues to highlight the wellness and improvement of the African American community in the Twin Cities. The theme for this summer’s event is “Celebrating the Spirit of Freedom and Community.”

Juneteenth, the oldest celebration of the end of American slavery, began in Galveston, TX, in 1865, when Union troops enforced the Emancipation Proclamation declaring all slaves freed in revolting states. Upon notice of their freedom two and a half years after the Emancipation Proclamation was issued, the former slaves held community festivals oriented to support the former slaves in their efforts to realize their new freedoms through voting, education, and community welfare as well as picnics, family games, arts and music.

Parks superintendent receives diversity leadership award

Parks superintendent receives diversity leadership award Jon Gurban, superintendent of the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board (MPRB), received the 2010 Pan-African Student Leadership Conference Award from the Office of Institutional Diversity at Minnesota State University, Mankato (MnSU). The award was presented at the April 7 meeting of the MPRB Board of Commissioners.

Gurban is honored as a pathfinder in the Park Board’s journey into diversity and celebrating emerging African communities within Minneapolis,” said Michael Fagin, Special Presidential Advisor at MnSU. “This award recognizes his contributions for providing culturally-sensitive programming and employment opportunities to meet the needs of a diverse Pan-African community.”

Just what the kids need

Project Diva and Above the E.D.G.E. youth programs will present a “Pillow Talk” on Saturday April 24.  This event is designed to be an intimate conversation in which youth and mentors can catapult progress towards the concepts of personal development that give them the esteem base needed to be successful in our fast paced society.

Community leaders will help to kick off discussions, followed by having the young adults break off into smaller groups to further the discussions on their own. The topics of discussion include: Leadership, Social & Emotional, Academic, Physical, and Financial Literacy.

Considering the many powerful national headlines regarding troubled youth, it seems that this face-to-face intimate conversation is just what the future ordered.

Mentor speakers are still being accepted. The event will be held at the U.R.O.C. on Plymouth Ave North. Contact Quadree Drakeford through is website

Minneapolis Public Schools to host additional informational meetings on district headquarters proposals

The Minneapolis Public Schools on April 20 and 22 will host informational meetings to provide community members with the opportunity to learn more about the three proposals for right-sizing district headquarters. These proposals were presented to the Board of Education on March 23 and at a public informational meeting on April 8. At the upcoming meetings, representatives from each of the three firms under consideration will detail their proposals and provide the community with an opportunity to ask questions.

Jamaican judge to discuss his international career in law, human rights May 13

Jamaican judge to discuss his international career in law, human rights May 13Jamaican Judge Patrick Robinson, president of the United Nations' International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, will reflect on his career in international law and human rights in a speech at 4:30 p.m. Thursday, May 13, in Thornton Auditorium of Terrence Murphy Hall, at the University of St. Thomas' Minneapolis campus, 1000 LaSalle Ave.

The presentation, followed by a question-and-answer segment, is free and open to the public, but reservations are required. For reservations email C.L.E. credits have been applied for. A reception follows.

the Amherst H. Wilder Foundation’s Neighborhood Leadership Program

 the Amherst H. Wilder Foundation’s Neighborhood Leadership ProgramOn Monday, April 26, the Amherst H. Wilder Foundation’s Neighborhood Leadership Program (NLP) will graduate 32 students from its 2009-10 program. The event, to be held at Wilder Center, 451 Lexington Parkway North, in Saint Paul, will feature a reception at 5:30 pm with the program beginning at 6:30 pm. Saint Paul Chief of Police John Harrington will offer the keynote address, and Alicia Huckleby, Saint Paul Public Housing Agency (PHA), will also offer remarks.

“In a world that is networked and where our relationships define our roles, we must have all hands pushing and pulling together for progress to be made,” said Harrington. “The NLP brings residents from various neighborhoods together where skills and relationships develop into positive social change."
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