EDISON, N.J. – The Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) recently announced new submissions for its Time Out for Black Lives reading program initiative, which aims to inspire and educate youth, athletes, families and fans. The new additions will put the digital library to over 23 videos to date.
Time Out for Black Lives features an interactive website, timeoutforblacklives.com, where coaches and student-athletes from MAAC basketball programs contribute their time and resources to read children’s books in entertaining videos, all focusing on Black culture, history, music and myths. Posted videos feature short biographies on each coach or student-athlete, with kid-friendly information such as the reader’s hometown, favorite book and favorite basketball player. There are also “Let’s Talk About It” resource guides to help parents and teachers start thought-provoking discussions with children viewing the videos.
Redshirt senior center Jordan Jones of Marist College read the book “Our Children Can Soar” in the latest round of videos. Jones noted “I enjoyed the book; it communicated a simple message that will help young Black kids know about the pioneers that paved the way to help guide their success. The Time Out for Black Lives reading program does an amazing job in encouraging literacy in young kids, which is the key to liberation. I hope this program continues to be a mainstay in this conference and has some more adoption across the NCAA landscape.”
Quinnipiac men’s basketball head coach Baker Dunleavy, when asked about the Time Out for Black Lives initiative, said “’Every Little Thing’ was a cool book for me to read as part of the Timeout for Black Lives initiative. The book is based on a song that I’m very familiar with, and it sends a powerful message of peace and love that our world really needs right now.
Bob Marley is someone who fought for justice time and time again through his work – and his daughter Cedella was able to spread his message of harmony through this adaptation.
Our country needs to commit to lasting change. I’m proud of the action the MAAC has taken to get out and make a difference, and I’m happy to be a part of this project.”
Iona women’s basketball head coach Billi Chambers added “The MAAC has really hit the nail on the head with this initiative. It’s so important to focus on Black history and Black culture and I’m glad our conference can all come together to create a connection with and teach younger generations. I’m looking forward to seeing the impact we can have and hopeful that this evolves into something larger across college basketball as a whole.”
Redshirt junior forward Callie Cavanaugh, who partook in the first round of videos by reading the book “I Am Enough” added “It’s important because if anything is going to change, it will be because of what we teach our children. It’s important to let kids of color know that their dreams and goals are achievable and that being of color will not hold them back.”