Episode 12: The Fight to SAVE Our Black Boys
In this episode of On The Square, it’s all about our Black boys! Sapelo Square’s Executive Director, Latasha Rouseau, speaks with Atiba Saleem Jones, the founder and Executive Director of SAVE Institute, which offers middle and high school programs to young Black boys as an alternative to a traditional school setting. Located in Atlanta, Georgia, the mission of SAVE Institute is “to SAVE black boys from cycles of poverty, crime, incarceration and lack of purpose through engagement in Service, Agriculture, Vocational training and Entrepreneurship”. As you will learn, Atiba has dedicated his life to positively impacting the lives of young men. The conversation flows from Atiba’s roots in Philly, his epiphany while in Syria and his maturation on the campus of Morehouse College. Atiba and Latasha touch on issues that include the school to prison pipeline, mental health, practicing Islam and rites of passage for young Black males. In a society where we are constantly confronted with negative depictions of Black lives, this is a dialogue for anyone ready to be inspired by the work and commitment of a group of men dedicated to seeing Black boys not only succeed, but thrive.
Make sure you stay until the end so you can hear briefly from a very special guest and student at SAVE Institute.
Atiba Saleem Jones is a youth advocate with a passion and dedication to bettering American society through uplifting and empowering under-served youth. He has worked with youth in various capacities as a schoolteacher, mental health counselor, program director, school leader, urban farmer and spoken-word poet. He has worked with youth of all ages locally and internationally. Atiba holds a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Morehouse College, a Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership, is a Certified Anger Management Specialist, Certified Life Coach, and a Certified Journeyman Farmer. Atiba currently serves as the founder and Executive Director of SAVE Institute, a nonprofit organization working to save black male youth from cycles of poverty, crime, incarceration, and lack of purpose; through engaging them in service, agriculture, vocational training and entrepreneurship.