The Outkast Academy: An Introduction
Welcome everyone! The Outkast Academy is excited you have chosen to join us as we venture on sharing with you all important topics, ideas, and thoughts we feel will have a genuine impact on you.
But if you’re reading this and have no idea who we are, we’re so glad you’re here with us! We’d like to introduce ourselves.
Who Is Outkast?
The Outkast Academy is a non-profit organization focused on helping youth find their purpose and tap into their potential through the arts, mentorship, academics, and fitness. Founded in 2013 by Founder and President, Jennifer Newton, Outkast has witnessed a substantial amount of youth from all kinds of backgrounds enter our programs and leave with a brighter sense of purpose, passion, and confidence. We have served neighborhoods all throughout Los Angeles, including Mid-City, West Adams, South Los Angeles, Koreatown, Echo Park, and Canoga Park. Over the last 8 years, we are fortunate to say we have partnered with schools, agencies, organizations, and even found our home studio to establish and further our impact!
Why Does This Work Matter?
We are firm believers that we can change the course of history if we can take one moment to have a true, lasting impact on our future leaders. Too often, we find ourselves wondering where each generation “went wrong.” What if we turned this around, focusing on what could be fixed, redeemed, and restored?
See, it’s a fairly easy task to critique the wrongdoings of those before us and complain about the foundation they laid out. But it takes a great level of responsibility to acknowledge how we contribute to existing problems in society. As we sit back in our couches, watching television, scrolling through Instagram, arguing with others in a Facebook post’s comment section, we forget that debating others on existing issues just to prove a point only gets us at the end of the cul-de-sac. When we reflect on what we’re able to do physically for others, we begin to discover that change has always been at our fingertips. We just have to be willing to make the needed sacrifices and patiently watch the fruit grow from our planted seeds.
Every day, we are fighting for our youth’s attention--not for our sake but for theirs. With distractions coming from all directions, our youth are easily swayed by how inconsistent the culture is. How do we impact, influence, and inspire our youth who are trying to figure themselves out, focused on what others are doing, and believe that their past and the sins inflicted upon them are all they have to their name?
We show up. We love them. We encourage them. We push them to grow out of who they think they are to become who they’re meant to be. It is not easy work but it is worth it! All the investment, the sacrifices, the tears, the mistakes, and all that’s found in between--all of it is worth it because we get to see our youth live out a life that may have seemed unattainable for them.
Your Contribution Matters!
We hope this has given you context as to why organizations like ours exist and matter. More importantly, we hope you too take some time to reflect on the ways you can contribute to impact our youth and help as we fight to push them forward.
As we continue to serve our youth, our hope is that our blog entries may serve as a resource for you to remain informed, motivated, and critical about the direction our society is moving in. By definition, being an outkast means being rejected by society. But we’re here to change the connotation of that and teach you why you should embrace being an outkast.
Welcome to the family!