DC STORM (Students Taught Organization and Respect through Mentoring) mentors work with teens that are considered mostly to be at-risk due to their economic situation. Most of them lack a support system which allows them to travel for a cultural/historical/educational purpose. The young men who represent DC STORM are very bright and are interested in their academic achievements.
Since 2016, Friends of Southwest DC has given grants to DC STORM for annual trips for Jefferson Academy Middle School students to visit Historical Hampton Roads, Virginia. The trip is an opportunity to teach the importance of culture and Black History with the additional exposure to HBCUs Hampton University and Norfolk State, as well as Old Dominion University and The College of William & Mary. There are also visits to museums and historical sites to learn about the Civil War, slavery, and African-American Culture, and a tour The National Maritime Center in Norfolk, and the USS Battleship Wisconsin, a new experience for all of them.
In June of 2020, another 15 teens and 4 adults were able to take the weekend trip while following all the health guidelines during a lull in the pandemic
In 2016 STORM used a grant from Friends of Southwest DC to take students from Jefferson Academy on an educational-cultural trip to Historical Hampton, Virginia. The purpose of the trip was to teach the youth the importance of culture and Black History and expose them to HBCU’s Hampton University and Norfolk State College.
Sites visited on the trip included:
Emancipation Oak, believed to be the place where Lincoln’s famous proclamation was first read to Hampton slaves
Hampton University Museum, one of the oldest African-American museums in the country
Little England Chapel, the only known African-American chapel in the state
Casemate Museum at Fort Monroe, which tell the story of Freedom Fort, the refuge for thousands of runaway slaves during the Civil War
See pictures from the trip below
In 2017, STORM requested, and received, a grant for an educational weekend trip to Philadelphia to visit several museums and universities.
Here is an excerpt of what they said about that trip:
"DC STORM, Inc. would like to thank the Friends of Southwest DC for allocating the funds for another educational experience for our young men. We had loads of fun and learned a lot while visiting Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Franklin Institute was one of the highlights of our trip. There were so many scientific activities for the boys which required plenty of body movements and hands on experience."
See pictures from the Philadelphia trip by clicking on the file below