Freedom Schools’ Weekly Wrap Up

NOTE: As of Feb. 29, 2024, Carolina Youth Development Center (CYDC) has rebranded to Landmarks for Families. Our nonprofit, community programs and residential services remain committed to cultivating thriving youth and families in this new chapter.

To kick off an amazing week for Freedom Schools, the youth learned Labi Siffre’s, “Something Inside So Strong,” with their own Freedom Schools spin. At the end of the song, the whole group chanted, “I know I can be what I want to be. If I work hard at it, I’ll be where I want to be.”  The motivational readers and empowering activities truly make the lyrics come alive in the minds of the youth.

Each Monday, tune in for a wrap up of the last week’s activities.

If you want to get to know the interns that spent the past 6 weeks with the children of Freedom Schools, click on the link below:

June 15 – 19 Activities

Mike from Self Defense Studio

Fashion Show

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Charleston Drug and Alcohol Program

Career Day (from L to R) with Matt Wetherell from Cummins, Steve Graybill from Boeing, Shawn Edwards from The Citadel, Ben Bredenkamp from Mead West Vaco, and Fitness Instructor Riley Ewald

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Special Guest Reader:   Kelley Paul

June 22-26


Dana Mitchel from the Lowcountry Food Bank and Lauren from Medical University of South Carolina talked to the Freedom Schools students about healthy eating and how certain foods affect certain body parts. Chef Bryan Cates of Basico and Chris Miller from Sow Seasonal, LLC taught the kids about different fruits, veggies and herbs, and the importance of growing your own garden.

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Blackbaud volunteers came to campus and put on a Field Day for the children

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Alexis Scipio, Sourcing Manager at Cummins


Brandon Rainer from TD Bank


Coach Earl Grant, College of Charleston Head Basketball Coach


Edie Blakeslee, Regional Vice President at Coastal Community Foundation


June 29-July 2


Kristin Kiefer from the Charleston Animal Society, and three-month-old Mickey, came and talked the kids about what they do and what it takes to care for an animal.


Abriana Titus, a CYDC alumni, came in to do some edible art with the children.  Below is a time laps video of one of the houses that was built out of pretzel sticks, marshmallow fluff, and gumdrops.


Robert Grimm, Principal at North Charleston High School


Amanda Lawrence, Vice President at Trident United Way


Kaneshi Hart, Business Owner of Confident You, LLC and Team Manager at IHG


Emily Hertwig (and her two children Faith and Kyle), from Cummins


July 6-10


The children did crafts where they had to make an animal using a Styrofoam cup, paper, foam and other miscellaneous things.

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Janice Crews from Charleston Symphony Orchestra came in this for an “Orchestra Petting Zoo” for the kids where they learned about the instruments and got to try out some of them out.

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The children ended the week on a relaxing note by doing some yoga with Sue Saadeh, owner of The Yoga Spot. She taught the kids a few different poses and did some meditation with them.

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Not Pictured is Dr. Harris from the College of Charleston

Attorney, Sara DeWolf


Wilbur Johnson, Attorney at Young Clement Rivers


CEO at InterTech Group, Inc., Anita Zucker


Yvonne Broaddus, President and Executive Producer at the Charleston Black Theatre




Sergeant Tiffany Smalls from the Army Reserves


As part of the South Carolina Stingrays 3rd Annual Kids Day, the children got to spend the day hanging out with the Head Coach Spencer Carbery and Mascot Cool Ray. They also got to shoot some pucks, try on the gear the players wear, skate on the ice, and take a ride on the Liquid Box Fan Zam.

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Shanstacy Whack, home health aid, bus driver, and mother to one of the Freedom School children


Marcus Amaker, Web designer, videographer, poet, musician and overall Renaissance man


Mayor of North Charleston, R. Keith Summey talked to the children, rather than reading, about treating everyone equally and that it’s what’s on the inside that counts. He says “we get so caught up in what is different that we forget what is alike.”


Elliot Summey, a Chair Memeber on Charleston’s City Counsel


Jasmine Kang, Plant Manager at Cummins Turbo Technologyies


July 20-24


Kara, Beth, Matt, Baleiji, Karina, Lashaunda, and Justin from Cummins came in to paint canvases with the children. Brandon Rainer, Assistant Vice President of Retail Banking from TD Bank, played a game with the kids that taught them about budgeting and saving their money.

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John Spann came in to teach the children some dance moves (No Picture Available)


Kerri Forrest from the Donnelley Foundation


Dr. Bernard Powers from the College of Charleston


Temitope Leyimu from Motley Rice


Freedom Schools ended this year with presentations put on by each classroom and a video slideshow that showed all the activities throughout the summer.  The children then enjoyed a cookout where they got to just hang out and enjoy their last day.

Thanks for a great Freedom Schools 2015!

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