Thursday, June 18, 2015

"Rise: The Promise of My Brother's Keeper" previews at AFI-Docs before airing on OWN and Discovery

Rise: The Promise of My Brother’s Keeper”, 50 minutes, directed by Dawn Porter and produced by the Discovery Channel, played at the ASI-Docs at a screening this evening at the Newseum in Washington DC. There is a subtitle: “A National Initiative to Improve the Life Outcomes of Boys and Young Men of Color”.
The official site is here

The film examined a mentoring program supported by the White House, specifically in Chicago (Urban Prep Academies), Yuba City-Marysville CA (Youth Build), and Baltimore (Halstead Academy of Art and Science), all part of “BAM” or “Becoming a Man”. 

I have a couple of personal reactions.  One is that this sounds like a moral imperative for all of us (including the childless) to become involved. Indeed, in the QA, one of the speakers mentioned the “Brother’s Keeper” passage in Genesis. I asked about the personal aspect and here is the answer.

The other is that I don’t see “helping people” as something that should be conceived in terms of racial or religious groups. 

One of the panelists described the role of technology in improving educational opportunities for those of color.  But that it a different issue from the personal one.  There was a general consensus from the panelists that everyone should "do what she could" and keep things real when interacting with others.
One member of the panel had a relative shot yesterday in Charleston, SC in a tragic incident mentioned before the film started.
In Washington DC, a charter school related to a program like this runs a boarding school and hires teachers and mentors to run the residential program.
The film will be aired on OWN Sunday June 21 and streamed on Facebook.

Update: September 1, 2015

The White House has a YouTube video with President Obama speaking about "My Brother's Keeper" here

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