Banyan Buzz
May, 2017
Welcome
Banyan Community invites you to join us under the Banyan tree as we share our joys, challenges and life events while living and growing together! Banyan Buzz is our attempt to bring you into the center of our conversations to celebrate with us. Enjoy!
 
Joani Essenburg, Co-Founder & Executive Director
5th Graders Reflect
And make a pledge
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As a part of the transition to middle school, Banyan helps youth prepare for and navigate upcoming changes. The 5th graders reflected on their experiences thus far, what the future holds for them as they transition to middle school, and advice for the younger youth. We hope you are impressed with the great maturity of ideas presented in their pledge:
 
As a member of Banyan Community’s 2016-2017 5th grade class, we promise to do these things to the best of our ability:
  1. We promise to include and care about everybody.
  2. We promise to tell the truth.
  3. We promise to encourage ourselves and others.
  4. We promise to break our fears and try new things.
  5. We promise not to turn anthills into mountains.
They shared this advice with the younger kids: do your homework, hang out with friends - but meet other people too, have fun, remember the Golden Rule, don't be afraid, and don't have attitude.
 
Words of wisdom for us all!
Hey Banyan!
Connect, Learn, and Share
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Compassion and Justice -
as it relates to
Charity and Development
 
What does it mean? How do we, as Christians, respond to the needs in our communities? With compassion, with justice, or both? Can we make a long lasting impact?
 
It depends.....
 
Join us for a conversation as we explore our role and our church's opportunity, in impacting change.
We will be challenged to consider that we often let our hearts get the best of us when we engage in action. Understanding the need (chronic or crisis), past the emotion, will drive how to best respond. Crisis needs require charity. Chronic needs require development. Both require that we uphold the dignity of the recipients. However, our acts of justice will be qualitatively different.
 
Upcoming Events
Mark your calendar
Hey Banyan!
Compassion and Justice
Wednesday, July 26
4:30 - 6:00 pm
St. Bartholomew Catholic Church
630 Wayzata Blvd E, Wayzata
 
Annual Banyan Dinner
Sunday, October 29
Banyan Community Center
2529 13th Ave S
Minneapolis
Save the Date!
Banyan Board of Directors
Banyan's Board of Directors is an active and engaged group ready to connect with you about resources for Banyan's future. Feel free to contact us.
 
Banyan Board:
Brian Provost, Chair
Mike Wilczynski, Vice Chair
Trevor Knight, Secretary
Dan Farley, Treasurer
Susan Haffield
Justin Hanratty
Barry Lieske
Lisa Mauer
David Tynes
Carol Wolfe
Support Banyan Online
Banyan now accepts donations online! This is a convenient and secure way to support the work of Banyan. Give it a try!
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Graduation Season is Here!
Banyan celebrates many milestones
Article ImageBanyan works with youth and families from Kindergarten through College building a pathway to success, which means lots of graduation celebrations every spring!
 
One we are most proud of is our high school graduates - they have beat the odds, had a strong finish at DeLaSalle High School, and are off to college in the fall. These five graduates join the 25 Banyan youth in college today.
 
Our 100% graduation rate is double the neighborhood average!
 
Other milestones we'll be celebrating - Kindergarten graduations, 5th graders ready to take on middle school, 8th graders looking forward to high school, and college graduations as well!
 
We know that parents are central to graduations. The enduring love, support, and desire to excel for youth result in "our dreams coming true!" 
Business Leaders Breakfast
Dr. Reatha Clark King encourages Testimony
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Thank you for joining us at our 6th annual Business Leaders Breakfast on April 27th. The first one in our new home!
 
After breakfast and time to mingle, we learned more about another tool to help build bridges to 1st generation business leaders - reverse networking! Banyan Scholars (college youth) benefit greatly from your willingness to connect to them opportunities.
 
Joani shared the story of the neighborhood bully – George, a born networker! She reminded us of the assets in our community and how your support is an investment in building bridges to leadership.
 
Akeyvianna, a junior at Old Dominion University (Norfolk, VA) shared her Banyan story. She has pushed herself to try new things, stepped out of her comfort zone (the breakfast stage is a perfect example!), and leaned on her Banyan family in the tough times as well as the good times – her future is full of possibilities.

Dr. Reatha King’s remarks focused on the need to build Confidence and Courage in our young people – it is evident that to bring about a new future, you must have both. We see it everday in Akeyvianna, and all the Scholars as they are either building bridges or taking steps over the bridge. #BanyanProud
 
She also challenged us to consider the 4th T (after time, talent and treasure) - Testimony, an important tool for creating pathways – sharing the stories of good work. By sharing the transformational work happening in the Phillips neighborhood, you make building bridges to opportunity possible! Will you share the Banyan story? And allow us to build curiosity, discover passions, and inspire leaders: one child at a time, one day at a time. 
Discovering Passions and Pursuing Goals
One Child at a Time
 
 
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Banyan Family Celebration
Kids Club wraps up with a Carnival!
Gathering together, sharing experiences, creating traditions, and forming relationships are key to building community - one of the hallmarks of Banyan.
 
The annual Banyan Carnival has all of these elements PLUS games, prizes, inflatables, food, face painting, balloon animals, and a photo booth! 
 
Laughter and conversation filled the air as new memories were made for youth, families, and neighbors. If success is measured in smiles - the carnival earned a 100%.
 
Enjoy some shapshots from the celebration!
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Summer.....it's almost here!
Back to School prep starts NOW!
Article ImageEvery year it seems like the school supplies show up in stores earlier and earlier!
 
That works for the School's Cool program (managed by St. Bartholomew Church) which prepares a fully loaded backpack for each Banyan youth, Kindergarten through High School - we are already in full swing for the fall.
 
The most important thing that doesn't show up on any school supply list is: Educational Desire! It is beyond any value, but success is impossible without it!  School's Cool supports and nurtures educational desire by providing the tools that Banyan kids need in order to perform in the best way possible in their classrooms. It really does make a difference that year after year Banyan kids walk into their classroom prepared and ready to go. Years and years of this add up to—GRADUATION. 
 
Click here to support School's Cool and ensure Banyan kids are ready!
Banyan Youth are Graduating from College!
This spring we celebrate 4, bringing the total to 13
Article ImageBanyan has been developing youth, strengthening families, and creating community in the Phillips neighborhood for almost 20 years! In that time we have graduated 44 youth from high school and are now able to report 13 college graduates. 
 
In our neighborhood 77% of people over the age of 25 have less than a bachelor’s degree. Think about that statistic for a minute. It's staggering.
 
Banyan is changing that - this spring we are celebrating 4 college graduates! Tyler from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls, KaoZoua from St. Olaf College, Mai Tee from the University of Minnesota -Twin Cities, and Jose from the University of St. Thomas. 
 
#BanyanProud

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Address postal inquiries to:
Banyan Community
2529 13th Ave S
Minneapolis, MN 55404