By Karen Stokes
Over 500 highly spirited students danced and sang along with members of Motown’s most legendary groups including The Temptations, The Miracles and The Contours at the Riverside Theatre last Friday, Dec. 17.
The event, “A Motown Christmas,” was hosted by a local nonprofit organization, STRYV365, in partnership with schools, students, teachers and community partners.
The audience was treated to a variety of Christmas music and Motown classics from the present and past like Smokey Robinson and the Miracles’ hit “Tears of a Clown.”
STRYV365 is a nonprofit organization based in Milwaukee that creates customized non-clinical trauma-informed programming.
“STRYV365 started with an idea that we wanted to create change by building resiliency, by building resiliency mindsets, it starts with relationship building,” Brandon Currie, STRYV365 CEO, said.
The program is designed to foster positive childhood relationships, strengthen interpersonal skills and increase the ability to be resilient during challenging times.
STRYV365 helps community youth overcome trauma through education, sports and activities.
“If you want to create change you have to build relationships,” Currie said. “You have to create positive experiences and we do that by being committed to the cause and wanting to peel back layers, ask questions and work with you on how we can create solutions to create change.”
Judith Parker, principal of Dr. Howard Fuller Collegiate Academy, explained that STRYV365 made the school a safe place again.
“I was so excited to meet Dr. Currie because they got it,” Parker said. “They weren’t coming with a silver bullet, they wanted to meet our kids, they wanted to meet our team to understand the challenges that we were facing and they were going to tailor a program that would address that.”
“Our organization turns two years old in January and we’ve had the privilege to partner with approximately 20 organizations in Southeast Wisconsin and Illinois,” Cody Hallowell, vice president and general counsel of STRYV365, said.
“In the past two years we have worked with over 3,500 students, our goal next year is to go to 5,000 and continue,” Currie said.
To learn more about STRYV365 or to support its mission, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (414) 502-9576.