SOAR Youth Empowerment Program: Pledge to Defy the Lie

This is the rallying call of the SOAR Youth Empowerment Program (SOAR-YEP). We join the Community Healing Network (CHN) in building the movement for emotional emancipation across Pittsburgh communities.  We add to the long-needed infrastructure for healing within our communities. SOAR-YEP includes multiple events in multiple communities:

1. Teen Workshop – Your True Strength > Who Am I Becoming?
2. Community Conversation – Teen Mental Health & Wellness

Take the Pledge

I pledge to act to . . .

1. Honor our ancestors and our children.
2. Defy the lie of Black inferiority.
3. Embrace the truth of Black humanity.
4. Emancipate my mind and my spirit.
5. Make “emotional healing” a priority.
6. Build the movement for emotional emancipation in my family and community.

Move beyond the pain of the blues to the sky blue of unlimited possibilities.”


Our forebears “made a way out of no way.” Their strength is my strength. I am a living legacy and a vital link between the Black community’s past and future. I will draw on the spiritual strength of our ancestors to help arm our children with the values, knowledge, skills, and mental attitude to excel. I will honor our ancestors and our children in all I do.

Black people have lived with the lie that we are less than human for much too long. I am not less than anyone. I will “Defy the Lie of Black Inferiority.”

Black is beauty, love, intelligence, a wealth of experience, knowledge, and goodness. I want to embody all of these qualities. I will “Embrace the Truth of Black Humanity.”

I want to be free of all the negativity and limitations of the lie. I want to be liberated to reach my fullest potential. I will join with my family and others in the Black community to do the work necessary to be psychologically and spiritually free.

I want to make emotional emancipation, healing, and wellness a personal, family, and community priority. I will celebrate Community Healing Days on the third weekend of every October. 

I want all Black people to be able to reach their fullest potential. I will help build the movement for the emotional emancipation of Black people for myself, my family, and my community.

I want to show my commitment to the movement. I will proudly answer Dr. Maya Angelou’s Call to Wear Sky Blue during Community Healing Days to show my determination to “move beyond the pain of the blues to the sky blue of unlimited possibilities!” SM