Overview: Scholars who attend Camp Umoja will be actively engaged in curriculum that empowers them to positively change their life, family and community. Through classroom instruction, activities, exercises and field trips scholars will engage in discourse that challenges and supports them in their journey to understand their history and how they can participate in the continuing quest for positive change in their families, neighborhoods and communities.
The curriculum will also develop reading, writing and mathematical skills to further core educational development and actively address “summer slide”. To accomplish this, the curriculum includes community involvement and civil rights history teaching practices of participation and leadership that translates into their present life circumstances and helps shape their future goals.
Goals: Scholars completing the curriculum will leave feeling empowered to make a difference in their lives moving forward while simultaneously increasing core educational development in reading, writing and mathematics.
The Camp Umoja Core Principles are listed below, each week aligning with one principle. There are guiding questions listed beneath each principle for scholars to explore.
Week 1: Unity: To strive for and to maintain unity in the family, neighborhood, community, and nation.
What community issue(s) am I passionate about?
What would I like to do for others in my family, my neighborhood, my community, or my world?
Week 2: Self-Determination: To define ourselves, name ourselves, create for ourselves, and speak for ourselves.
What is something in my life that I am willing to make a commitment to?
Who in my life can I include to help further my commitment and how?
How does a quality education improve my life, my family, my neighborhood, my community, and/or my world?
Week 3: Collective Work and Responsibility: To build and maintain our community together and make our brothers' and sisters' problems our problems and to solve them together.
How does my identity shape my experience?
How is my life perspective different than others?
How is the African-American struggle for equality similar and different from other marginalized groups continuing struggles?
Week 4: Cooperative Economics: To build and maintain our own schools, places of worship and businesses to mutually benefit from them together.
How do I, or can I start, to support my neighborhood and my family?
What is the entrepreneurial spirit and how can that apply to me?
Week 5: Purpose: To make our collective vocation the building and developing of our community in order to restore our purpose and greatness. What does it mean to and how can I live a life of purpose and meaning?
What strategies can I use to make a change, starting in my home, neighborhood and my community? How have people done so in the past?
Week 6: Creativity: To do always as much as we can, in the way we can, in order to make our community more beautiful and beneficial for all. What is my mission for community involvement?
What will I do to help change my world? Where can I begin to help make this change now?
Final Project: The last principle is Creativity. Scholars are asked to create a final project aligning with current community issues they are passionate about. This piece will be presented on the final day of Camp Umoja where families and community supporters are invited to attend. It can be presented in a variety of ways to include but not limited to spoken word, theatre, poetry, art, music and/or dance.