As we celebrate this Juneteenth holiday that has been proceeded by social unrest and cries for equality, justice, and freedom, it cannot be lost that all the hopes and promise Juneteenth celebrates has not come to pass. One hundred years after, Martin Luther King, Jr told the world about his dream of fulfilling that promise of equality and justice. Sadly, he was assassinated for working towards that dream. Growing up, I witnessed my father continuing Dr. King’s fight against the inequities in the justice system, and policing as a member of the Michigan Ministers Alliance. My family experienced up close how demanding equal justice for all is not for the faint of heart.
Now here we are in 2020, after the death of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and countless others, still fighting for that promise of equality, shouting at the top of our lungs that black lives matter. There’s a difference in the air this time. This time, the world is shouting with us.
Vista Del Mar raises its voice with the world to say that the lives of Black People do matter. It matters when we look into the faces of all the children, adolescents, young adults, and families we serve to tell them that we support and value them. It matters when we recognize the struggles of injustice and inequality and stand in the breach to fight it. We will join with others and be the voice for those that are unable to shout for themselves.
Working in under-served communities for more than a century, Vista Del Mar has and will continue to be a champion for children and families in need. We will work collaboratively to expand programs and curriculum that address social injustice while providing staff, residents, students, and clients the tools to contribute to the continued movement towards equity and inclusion in our society. Today, Vista commits to meet this moment.