Powerful Beyond COVID!
* During the COVID-19 crisis, Powerful Beyond Measure has remained committed to meeting the needs of youth and continuing to engage them through virtual and socially distanced programming. With this global pandemic, came sudden changes that sent the world into a tailspin; with an even greater impact on vulnerable youth, their resources and their education. While it was challenging to pivot so quickly, our priority will always be the enrichment, growth and development of young people!
PBM has been working to provide a much needed sense of normalcy and continuity adolescents, while also helping them face the unique challenges COVID has presented. Our programming grew to include more life skills, enhanced health education, greater career exposure, broader discussions on current affairs, etc.
Highlights have included:
- Virtual cooking lessons with professional chefs (where youth were provided ingredients & supplies by PBM and had opportunities to cook for their families)
- Entrepreneurship series to teach youth about business principles and guide students through creating their own on-line-based, apparel company during this crisis
- Our first national Exploring Possibilities allowed teens and young adults from all over the country to partake in our career development event, via Zoom. The session highlighted careers in Journalism and Writing and featured presentations by a number of professionals in these fields, including a Pulitzer Award Winner!
- CAPE Cares COVID Outreach was a key way to make sure young people were both aware of the needs of others during these times and still maintained a sense of helping those in the community, even from home. Through a partnership with Jersey Mike’s, our youth supplied over 500 lunches to first responders and essential workers at fire stations, shelters, hospitals, nursing homes and more. We also provided individuals meals and groceries to families who were severely affected by the crisis.
- Planting and Gardening – as one of our socially distanced activities, we brought youth out to learn about food sustainability and had them individually start growing their own food, from herbs to kale to lettuce
- The CAPE League Book Club provided books for all members – focusing on stories of young people who overcame hard circumstances (i.e. a Muslim internment camp, racial injustice, The Holocaust, cultural identity, etc.)
- Health and Fitness sessions – in the absence of attending school physically, we held sessions to keep kids moving, exercising and learning how to practice good hygiene and maintain healthy practices!
- In December, we will continue our financial literacy series – to educate young people in important skills outside the classroom
- And we continued our more traditional offerings, with COVID friendly adjustments – online tutoring, Broadway theater viewings, trivia wars, college discussions, Current Affairs Chat & Chews, game nights and more
COVID has been a force to be reckoned with, for us all. And like any other challenge, you must find opportunities to grow from it - and we are Powerful Beyond Measure.
In 2021, we have great plans to help prepare youth for a future beyond COVID, making virtual programming an addition to our regular youth enrichment and bring two programs to a more national stage!
- Virtual CAPE will fully launch in 2021 as our supplemental, after-school programming for youth. The program will uphold all the curriculum and enriching elements of the CAPE League – while allowing more young people to participate, remotely. It will, not only allow PBM to serve more students – but will also allow us to expand our offerings and dive deeper into various subject areas, arts endeavors and life skills sessions
- With help from our friends at Facebook, PBM is proud to announce a new VR Series. Utilizing Oculus headsets and virtual reality technology, students will be able to explore and experience education in the most advanced ways. As COVID thrusted us into an even more technologically connected world – PBM wanted to find a way to use technology to make learning both fun and completely immersive. Using an education track that will focus on geography, history, science, art, culture and technology – we will engage youth in the future of education. Phase 2 will allow students to start learning about how to create VR programs – a career skill that will be perfect in a post-COVID world
- Our quarterly career program, Exploring Possibilities will go national! The success of our first, Exploring Possibilities, on-line, opened the event and our featured speakers to young people across the country. We hope to triple the number of young people we can expose to interesting careers, as well as open up opportunities for fantastic professionals to participate from anywhere in the country
- We will re-launch the Future Fund! The Future Fund was established to grant small, monetary gifts designed to support the dreams and goals of youth (up to age 25). The objective was to provide a resource that would help actualize a young person’s vision for their future by removing a financial barrier, which may prevent a dream from being realized.