Karson Baldwin & Israel Kambomba
Educating for Tomorrow
A partnership where students at local schools and the Thomas Jefferson International Newcomer’s Academy visit each other’s schools, play, create, and eat together as they share their lives. These friendships cultivate honor and respect for immigrants and refugees.
April 11, 2020
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Onè Respè has adapted to continue cultivating and strengthening relationships through social distancing. They are:
- Encouraging buddies to stay connected on social media as much as possible.
- Planning a friendly competition between buddies to see who can spend the most time learning a language on Duolingo. This will encourage buddies to stay in touch and give newcomer students more incentive to continue improving their English skills, which are key to successful integration.
- Asking American-born students to assist their buddies’ families in completing their census forms as this will help their communities get the resources they need in the future.
- Sending their immigrant and refugee buddies a Chipotle gift card, as food insecurity is an increasing issue. This is a small gesture, but I hope it will help and remind them that we care and are here for them.
October 23, 2019
Onè Respè had their first gathering of the year where the University School students planted more than two dozen trees with their counterparts from Thomas Jefferson International Newcomers Academy in the East Cleveland Township Cemetery.
“Making friendships is a good way to make people feel welcome.” Karson shared during WEWS Channel 5 coverage of the event. See the clip >
September 11, 2019
Karson and Israel have been invited to speak at the National Immigrant Integration Conference in Detroit in October, and have added a third school, Beaumont School, to the Onè Respè program.
They created a video as part of an activity aimed at mutuality and relationship building:
Karson is also hosting a fundraiser for Onè Respè at his school, University School, on December 13. The students, who normally have to wear a jacket and tie, can pay $5 to be able to dress how they want for the day.
May 17, 2019
Onè Respè received a grant form the Most Foundation and Youth Service America. Karson and Israel also moderated a youth panel at the Sister Cities Conference in early May.
April 17, 2019
Karson has won the 2019 Princeton Prize in Race Relations and will go to Princeton University next week to share his work with Onè Respè, and Project RACE and Multiracial Heritage Week. There will be a local celebration on May 2, 2019 at the Sally and Bob Gries Center.
April 8, 2019
In addition to their media appearances since winning Accelerate, Karson and Israel have spoken at Cleveland Metropolitan School District and University School Board meetings and with the 2019 Leadership Cleveland Class. Karson was also offered a paid summer internship at Global Cleveland, which he feels will be a huge help with Onè Respè.
Laurel School and Beaumont School will be joining the program this fall.
In addition to the LoPresti grant, they have begun receiving financial support from private donors as well.
March 27, 2019
Karson and Israel Kambomba were Live on Lakeside. See the clip >
March 25, 2019
Karson Baldwin and Israel Kambomba received a grant from The Daniel W. LoPresti ’03 Philanthropic Board of University School to support and expand their project. According the University School website, “The Daniel W. LoPresti ’03 Philanthropic Board of University School is an Upper School student-run group through which students engage in community service, learn the institutional skills necessary for philanthropy, raise funds to support their philanthropic goals, and solicit and make grants that help those in need. Our board’s intention is to improve the quality of life of children in poverty in the Greater Cleveland area, with an emphasis on education.”
March 22, 2019
Karson Baldwin and Israel Kambomba, Accelerate 2019 winners, were on Channel 19 News’ Sunny Side Up with Damon Maloney chatting about their project.