Black Girl Magic is all about creating your own magic, then using your magic to help others. Elisa is a prime example of Black Girl Magic. I had the amazing opportunity to interview her about her organization Diamond on the Rise (DOTR). DOTR is a non-profit that provides resources to children and youth between the ages of five and eighteen in Baltimore City and surrounding counties. Elisa created DOTR to help youth who may lack support systems at home.
Name: Elisa Tyler
(Elisa Tyler Co-founder of DOTR)
1 .What inspired you to create Diamond On The Rise?
My mother gave me the inspiration to create DOTR .As a Social Worker, I always had a liking to assisting at-risk/high-risk youth and adolescents. One day, my mother came to me and suggested I should start my own youth nonprofit to be a support to youth who may lack support in their home front.
2. What is the mission of Diamond On The Rise?
Through dedication and nurture, DOTR promotes positive behaviors in youth. Our organization achieves victory over violence through mentoring, education, and service.
(Diamond on The Rise mentees)
3. What advice would you give to youth wanting to start their own non-profit organization?
I would tell the youth to reach for the stars and jump over the moon BUT first the youth must research. Research is key in understanding exactly what his/her program will be about, who is the population and what is the need of the services. Also, I would tell the youth, don’t give up and brace yourself for the “No’s”.
4. What services does Diamond On The Rise provide?
DOTR provides an evidence based after school programming service, mentoring service, youth and adult workshops and summer programming. We will soon be launching a Community Based Mental Health Program.
(Diamond on The Rise mentees)
5. What advice would you give to your younger self?
I would tell my younger self do not take everything personally. Do not allow people who are not supporting you to dictate your cause for those who cherish your programs.
6. How did you deal with disappointments that came your way while creating this amazing organization?
I prayed a lot to heal me from anger and disappointment. I also talk to my friends and family about what was going on and asked for advice. To this day, I still get disappointed when things are not able to go as planned.
7. How can young people volunteer at Diamonds On The Rise?
They can go to our websitewww.diamondsontherise.org and complete the volunteer application and or send resumes to email@example.com.
8. Where do you see Diamonds On The Rise in 10 years?
Diamonds On The will continue to grow its enrichment programs/services with mentoring and after school programming, in which we will obtain a recreation center in which inner city youth will be able to come to a safe haven to play and complete their school work. Diamonds On The Rise is already becoming a household name. Second. Diamonds On The Rise is launching an outpatient mental health clinic for at-risk youth and families where we will be providing in home support to assist with decrease behaviors.
9. What does black girl magic mean to you?
Black Girl Magic is someone who is making a move. Someone who has the juice. Someone who is not afraid to uplift other females while giving back to their own community.
(DOTR mentee and mentor)
Stay Tuned for Part 4 of the Black Girl Magic Series!