Building Strong Black Parents

It is easier to build strong children, than to repair broken men.”1

In a world where it’s increasingly difficult to tell what’s right or teach it, parents are saddled with an unenviable task: providing direction and stability to their children in situations where even they wouldn’t mind some guidance.

But then, isn’t that what parenting is all about? There’s hardly any parent who is 100% prepared for the sensations and challenges that parenting poses. As most parents would confess, we’re all just making it up as we go along – and hoping to God that we’re making the best of it.

However, our children deserve more than this “spray and pray” parenting tactic. Well-raised and centered children are the foundation of a healthy society, and it’s our job as parents to help make that happen. That’s why the work that Bolanle Ambonisye and U&I-RISE do is so vital.

“Parents deserve to be equipped, and children deserve equipped parents.” Bolanle Ambonisye

An adult education and training company, U&I-RISE is uniquely focused on equipping Black parents with the knowledge and support they need to become effective parents. The company assists parents with the timely tools and resources they need to understand parenting in this age, and navigate the unique difficulties of being a Black parent in the United States. U&I-RISE has received more than $150,000 in grants to facilitate TOPP workshops across various areas and in communities that need parenting support the most.

There’s no doubt that parenting is harder than ever. And it’s natural to encounter feelings of overwhelm or helplessness in the face of the economic, social, and emotional realities of being a parent. But as Ambonisye explains, “parenting is still a job that must get done (and done well), and U&I-RISE is here to help meet that objective.”

Through its Tapping Our Parental Power (TOPP) curriculum, U&I-RISE provides learning and tools that help Black parents create a foundation for their children’s academic and life success, break negative cycles, and (re)discover delight in parenting.

In Ambonisye, parents benefit from an experienced professional who was equipped with solid parenting information and tools early in her parenting, who also raised her own 4 children to be what most people tell her, are fantastic people. Ambonisye created the Tapping Our Parental Power curriculum because she realized that she happened to be in the right place at the right time to Ambonisye and U&I-RISE have been facilitating TOPP workshops since 2007, and the company’s founder has published two TOPP books: Tapping Our Parental Power (In A Nutshell) and the TOPP Manual.

The training and support that U&I-RISE provides is timely, and most parents who encounter the company reach this conclusion. Up to 97% of people who completed TOPP workshops found the training helpful and said all parents can benefit, no matter their parenting expertise or empowerment.

Despite the difficulty of marketing directly to parents (few people would admit they need help with parenting) U&I-RISE has been successful in its work.

The company regularly partners with institutions such as schools, including St. Louis and Seattle Public Schools, nonprofits, and communities to facilitate TOPP workshops with their families and clients.

1 Frederick Douglas

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