I Am Somebody!
Weaving Inspired Exchange
I Am Somebody! uses the art of storytelling to build diverse communities committed to supporting the development of youth leaders. Our goal: to build a network of strong relationships among individuals and organizations that results in integrated solutions to young people’s needs.
While our programs are based in South Africa, we regularly share our model abroad through partnerships with Universities and Organizations in America. We are also currently accepting internship applications from American students.
These programs provide a network of support for young adults, ages 18-25.
The 18-month Rites of passage program is our primary program. It supports ten young adults from diverse backgrounds to let go of the barriers that hold them back from their full potential and take a bold step towards creating lives that matter.
But they don’t need to do this alone, they are part of a larger whole. Around these young adults, I Am Somebody! builds and sustains a network of support using three other programs:
Through its Partner Exchange Program, I Am Somebody! facilitates the exchange of valuable resources and expertise among youth serving nonprofit organizations. In this way, we cover more than half our costs without any money and offer opportunities for the young adults with more than fifteen organizations.
Its Community Building Program consists of storytelling workshops, events and individual relationship building. These community members witness the growth of the young adults.
Its Mentorship Program provides critical training and supervision. These mentors provide regular mentorship to the young adults.
WHO WE ARE
Co-founded by Nicole le Roux and Toni Stuart, I Am Somebody! has a Director, dedicated board of artists and activists, fifteen partner organizations, a consulting facilitator, an intern and many incredible volunteers to roll out four programs. In 2013 we aim to grow our staff to include an administrative assistant, two interns and a part time facilitator.
|Nicole le Roux|
“I have kindly been supported by the Marion Institute since I was running a storytelling project at 15 years old. Throughout the last 10 years of working with other people’s stories and my own, I’ve discovered who I am, and what matters most to me. My life vision is to eradicate the fear I experienced in my home country of South Africa, a fear that enables people to oppress others, and to address the all too familiar silences and separations I experienced between people of different classes and cultures in America. My work, rooted in the environment, is about restoring relationships. I believe that my vulnerability, my willingness to first and foremost address the silences inside of myself, is what equips me to do this work.” -Nicole le Roux, Director
So far, I Am Somebody! has raised $35,577 through donations and exchange of resources towards running our programs in 2012. Thank you to Mark Finklestein and Janet Penn for their friendship, mentorship and loving donation. Our heartfelt thanks also go to the Marion Institute team and Board for their support for our work over the years. And a Huge thank you Christina Bascom and Trudy Kingery for their energy, time and commitment to I Am Somebody! We are so grateful for the resulting donations from many incredible individuals, together they have given us such a big boost to manifesting our dream. Now we need your help! We are currently aiming to raise an additional $12,500 to be able to offer a five day camp, a workshop and mentorship sessions to our Rites of Passage participants. Any donations or monthly pledges towards this goal will be gratefully received.
We firmly believe that somebody’s who know they matter can grow anything. Just consider the impact your donation would have integrating a community, creating a global model for reconciliation, and enabling young adults to live lives of leadership that matter… Yes! You, too, can be a part of positive transformation!
To support our work, kindly donate here.
I Am Somebody!
c/o Marion Institute
202 Spring St.
Marion, MA 02738
Nicole le Roux
I Am Somebody! Directors