The DeKalb County Human Services Department will host a virtual celebration of its End-of-Summer Virtual Village program on Monday, Aug. 10, 2 p.m. The event will include a summer highlights video and a presentation featuring youth participants. Registration (https://dekalbcountyga.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_IxTvFoZmTr68_f6jg8VuYg) is free and open to the public.
The Virtual Village is an online platform that was launched in June by DeKalb as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The summer session of the Virtual Village included more than 30 classes and programs, which connected instructors on a weekly basis with more than 500 youth participants virtually. The platform includes information, classes and activities for parents and youth (from birth through 18 years of age).
Class topics included dance, theater/film, arts and crafts, technology, media, cooking and more. Featured classes were free to DeKalb County residents. To address the “digital divide,” the DeKalb Human Services Department partnerd with Inspiredu, formally PowerMyLearning of Greater Atlanta, to distribute free refurbished computers to qualifiying families.
Renee Ross, a DeKalb resident and middle school Social Studies teacher at Ivy Preperatory Academy, expressed how appreciative she is to have her son, Mekhi Duncan, in the Village.
“At the start of the summer I was distraught in thinking what are we going to do since camps were canceled.” Ross goes on to say that the experience has been wonderful and they never missed a class,” Ross said.
Duncan, a 13-year-old eighth-grader, said he enjoyed the Youth DeCoded and Chess classes. He also received a get a headstart in geometry, a subject he will be taking in the fall at The Waldorf School of Atlanta. Being an advanced chess player, he learned new strategies to master his craft in the class taught by Orrin “Chessmate” Hudson.