Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Renewed Minds Founder Talks Discrimination and Domestic Violence Amongst Youth

Cumberland County—Renewed Minds called on all girls to partake in a “far above rubies experience” in early March. Mothers and daughters flooded the Alms Center (Bridgeton, NJ) for a “mini” Girls’ Conference.

“This conference is for Rubies by Rubies. The girls planned the conference and executed it themselves. I’m so proud,” said Founder/CEO of Renewed Minds, Tracey Wells-Huggins.

Rubies are female youth members of Renewed Minds.

The Girls’ Conference sprouted from a disappointing experience four Rubies had at a program in North Jersey. “I took four of the girls to an event and when it was over they turned to me and said, ‘We could’ve did this ourselves’, so I challenged them to make it happen and they did,” said Wells-Huggins.

Guest speakers chimed the message of “Positive D.R.A.M.A. (Dreams, Responsibility/Respect, Abilities, Motivations, and Attitudes) throughout the night.

Motivational speaker, Dr. Emily Cannon, commanded all ears on her as she talked about the “benefits of being yourself”, telling the audience, “Quit trying to be everybody else and in everything else. You don’t have to be a “drama” queen, you can be a princess.”

When asked why she thought it important to touch on that particular subject Dr. Cannon said, “I think it’s important for our young ladies to get focused. They get so side-tracked on all that’s going on in the world and they need to know if they get focused they can succeed.”
Before and after dinner the crowd split for “break out” sessions. 

Vice President of Steered Straight, Inc., John Fuqua, and Founder of Pink Roses, Inc. Janice Renee Burton spoke with the teen girls about various social issues.

Author Makema Douglas rounded up the mothers for an inspirational message on how to better deal with unforeseen stresses in life. Douglas compared life to a rubber band, reminding the mothers they must be flexible through every situation.  “Kids love to laugh and sometimes we forget to laugh. We have to remember we can be responsible but we still have to laugh. Laughter releases so many emotions we have built up inside,” she says.

Towards the end of the night Wells-Huggins became teary eyed as she spoke on her joy of seeing a large amount of mothers in attendance, “It’s so beautiful to see so many mothers in one room-- learning. This event was for the girls, but they brought out the women.”

Renewed Minds reaches students in Bridgeton High School, Cumberland Regional High School, and Millville Senior High School. To become a member see your school’s Guidance Counselor for more information or call Renewed Minds at (856)213-5263.

Rock Coogi Talks Battle Rap and BET's 106&Park

So often we dream of accomplishments that we believe we may never acheive. We second-guess ourselves out of fear of failure or defeat. Though we want so badly to acheive the goals we set for ourselves, we frequently talk ourselves into settling for less due to our fears of coming short of our dreams or not being "good enough" to hold the top spot.

Rapper, Rock Coogi, battled with that same fear within himself and amongst his community. With peers, friends, and even family doubting his talents and some trying to talk him into a more "practical" living. It wasn't until he decided to block out the nay-sayers and set the goal to enter BET's 106&Park Freestyle Competition that he truly realized his potential to make waves in the music industry. Staring defeat in the face on a New York City stage, Rock Coogi no longer feared failure but used his experience as leverage to move forward. To overcome defeat and still know that you're "good enough" is raw talent.