July 17, 2015
PORTLAND — Black Male Achievement (BMA) Portland's Summer Youth Experience is a collaboration with Worksystems and IRCO to both support youth in their successful completion of the Summerworks program, and to engage youth in a culturally specific, policy-focused, youth-led summit.
The program, which launched today at City Hall, involves fifty self-selected young Black men in the Summerworks program who will meet every Friday to learn more about each of the BMA policy focus areas and identify issues they face as young Black men.
They will receive emotional intelligence training and will spend the majority of their time in the Friday sessions organizing and planning a youth-led summit where they will present the issues they have identified, as well as solutions.
BMA Portland is an umbrella entity of over 20 organizations in the region represented by Black men that will act as convener, facilitator, policy guide, and collective voice to exert influence and push for change for the betterment of Black men and boys. A two-year process of community engagement and visioning was undertaken to gain feedback, clarity, and direction for the work.
Housed in the Office of Equity and Human Rights within Mayor Hales’ portfolio, BMA works with officials in Multnomah County government, as well as with for-profit and non-profit entities to create access to jobs and mentoring.