Dearest Kismet Community,

We want to share with you our perspective on the latest events unfolding throughout our nation in response to the killing of George Floyd and countless other Black individuals that highlight racial injustices in the United States. We recognize the centuries of systemic racism and oppression inflicted on Black people, Indigenous people, and people of color (BIPOC). We believe that equality can only come when legitimate economic opportunity is available to everyone, regardless of race, income, or family circumstance.

In order for us to achieve social justice and overcome centuries of systemic racism in this country, there must be a fundamental transformation and widespread shift of our thinking and actions. We applaud all of the BIPOC and youth leaders who have come forward to call upon us all to listen, to learn, and to act. Kismet’s mission is to nourish the physical, intellectual, and emotional development of underserved youth by supporting their potential. We recognize that this potential has often been impacted by socio-economic disempowerment, discrimination, and the criminal justice system, all of which are contributing toward fractured families.

Kismet has always valued equality. We will continue to work with youth from across New England while embracing diversity, fostering compassion, and cultivating love. In addition, we will work together to confront our internal blind spots, and create more opportunities to expand diversity within our program and staffing.

To our students and in particular to our BIPOC students during this time of unrest: We see you. We hear you. We care about you. It’s okay to feel angry, worried, and profoundly sad. We sit with you in these feelings. We also know that racism is something many of you live with every day. You deserve to feel and be safe, and you deserve opportunities to thrive and to be successful. We stand with you.

With warmth,
Alyssa and the entire Kismet Team