I recently had the pleasure of speaking with Ypsilanti community activist Tyrone Bridges. Bridges is the founder of a wonderful non-profit organization called Behavior Workshop. Bridges founded the Ypsilanti organization 20 years ago.
The mission of Behavioral Workshop, and this is directly from the Behavior Workshop website. is to assist families with removing barriers from their lives that tend to stunt their growth and development. The organization is also focused on mentoring young people as far as leadership skills while teaching them computer skills which is so important in today's internet world. The primary goal of the organization is youth development, and that's a beautiful thing.
In my conversation with Tyrone over the weekend his passion for young people in the community of Ypsilanti was abundantly clear. This is a man who is clear, direct, and straight forward in his view that young people in Ypsilanti need focus and need something to DO. When he say's "something to do" he means it in a broad sense. In our conversation, and I'm para-phrasing, Tyrone made the point that too many young people in Ypsi get into trouble because there exists a major lack of programs for young people to be involved with, particularly in the summer. I completely agree with his points.
In my opinion, I feel it is not fair that wealthy communities like Ann Arbor have so many after school and summer programs that are only affordable for the wealthier residents, but places like Ypsilanti and my hometown of Flint are able to provide very few affordable opportunities for young people.
Currently, Tyrone told me that he is working with a group of teenagers who teach senior citizens how to use computers. It is also free of charge. His organization is also working to help residents with home improvement. This is wonderful work.
Tyrone Bridges and his organization, Behavior Workshop, is a shining example of the positive work being done in the community of Ypsilanti and it was a pleasure speaking to him.
Purple Walrus Press