Mariama White-Hammond, 29
Executive Director, Youth Worker, Community Organizer, Project HIP-HOP;
Minister-in-Training at Bethel AME Church
Project HIP-HOP (Highways Into the Past—History, Organizing and Power) is a youth-led, secular, non-profit organization. Through the study of hip-hop culture and the history of social movements, it engages young people in critically analyzing the past and present so they can take action to make a better future.
- What one or two things most motivated you to get involved?
1. I grew up in an amazing community where I felt nurtured and challenged, but I also grew up in a neighborhood where other young people did not have that same privilege. My parents taught me that God blesses us because we are called to bless others. This is what I am called to do, and I wouldn't be fulfilled doing anything else.
2. During high school, I wished I had been able to be part of the Civil Rights movement. That time has passed, but the issues have not. I believe that the young people I serve can and will start a new movement for change. So I want to be on their bandwagon.