"There's some kids, they don't think they're as good as somebody else or they don't deserve the same things that others have," said Marian Coleman, curator for Noble Hill, an African-American cultural museum that reveals what life was like for black residents during the early- to mid-1900s through donated items, like photographs, and hairstyling and cooking utensils. "So we want to try to get them to feel good about themselves and know that everybody has equal chances to do whatever they would like to do in life. So we're trying to build up their self-esteem.
"All of [the activities are] supposed to tie in with self-esteem. Some people feel rejected. They might feel dissatisfied, discouraged. They have lack of respect for themselves. We want to try to bring out these different things, letting them know that this is not good but we want to build on this. And we want to do some activities, and we have some people coming to talk to them about these different topics."
Geared toward youth ages 5 to 12, the free program will be held at Noble Hill, 2361 Joe Frank Harris Parkway in Cassville. While encouraged, attendees are not required to pre-register.
"Each week, we are going to do a topic that will help them," said Rita Perkinson, coordinator of the Summer Heritage Program. "We'll discuss images in the media. We'll discuss gaining self-esteem, peer pressure, bullying. We'll also discuss some of the business ideas that they may have for some of the young entrepreneurs that may be in the bunch that may not have an opportunity to express their ideas elsewhere. We just really want them to be able to focus on themselves and celebrate the good things about them.
"Self-esteem is vitally important, especially today. Self-esteem goes a long way on preventing bullying because a lot of children that do bully have been bullied or come from bad backgrounds or have low self-esteem. So it cuts down on that end. It also helps, especially with young women -- building their self-esteem and knowing their self worth. It will help them to make better choices either in relationships, in pursuing their education and just being serious about life in general, having a good basis to set them up for the best in life."
For more information about the Noble Hill program, call 770-382-3392.