The nonprofit Inner City Suburban Youth Foundation Inc. is providing tablets, school supplies, and other materials to underserved Baltimore City students between the ages of six and 16 for the 2020-21 school year. Through the foundation’s Technology Project, students are chosen by a financial need for school supplies.
“So far, we have provided 30 tablets and school supplies to students between the ages of six and 15,” said William Newman, the founder of the Inner City Suburban Youth Foundation. “Our goal is to provide as many as 60 tablets and school supplies to students, and with adequate funding it could be as many as 100.”
The organization does receive donations from the WBAL Kids Campaign; the Mitzvah Fund for Good Deeds; the Macht Fund of The Associated; Safeway; Wegmans; Pepsi Cola; Network for Good; Sol Levinson & Bro’s,; the Baltimore Orioles; and the Baltimore Ravens.
Newman says students qualify for the materials by writing a letter to the foundation, which includes their name, age, school and financial need. Once students are approved, parents are required to attend with the student to pick up the material.
“Tablets will not be given to an adult without their student,” he declared because the program advocates for parental involvement.
The Inner City Suburban Youth Foundation offers a wide range of mentoring and tutoring for students and is a “refuge to keep students off the streets, out of trouble, and clean of drugs,” according to Newman.
Newman has previously said that the idea for creating an organization, which includes excursions for youth to sporting and entertainment events, began years ago when the son of a friend expressed an interest in going to a wrestling match. “I was working at a radio station at the time, and I took him to the event, and we sat in the front row,” Newman said. “I later spoke to the promoter who invited us back again, and [he] told me that whenever I wanted to come to let him know. A friend of mine told me that this is something that I should do.”
Newman secures donations for tickets to sporting and entertainment events and then makes them available to local schools. The principal or school administrator selects students for trips based on good grades, good conduct, and maintaining a B average.
Upon the trip’s conclusion, all of the students are required to write about their first airplane ride and their travel experience. When tickets aren’t donated, Newman purchases them himself. He said this year’s school supply giveaway is different because the pandemic has limited the foundation’s resources and has forced officials to become more creative.
“We also are planning to collaborate with Dreambuilders, [a Maryland-based nonprofit interfaith community of teens and adults who build homes for those in need], to provide desks to every student we have accepted in the Technology Project,” Newman said.
The Charm City native graduated from Baltimore City College and attended Morgan State University. He has a background in broadcast journalism and has worked at WJZ-TV (CBS- Baltimore) Channel 13.
“Our ultimate goal is to make these youth productive,” Newman added.
For more information about the foundation or find out how you may help, contact William Newman at 443- 742-2974.
Courtesy Photo/ICSYF Leonard Drake is all smiles with his new tablet