Date: November 21, 2020
Location: Newark, NJ
According to Dictionary.com, being selfless is similar to being altruistic — in other words giving to others without looking for personal gain. If you give time, money, or things to other people without expecting something in return, that is selfless. Social media entrepreneur, Tyree Barnes teamed up with his big brother, No Kutt recording artist, Chad B for the Black Genius Turkey Giveaway it was not only selfless, it was revolutionary. The brothers passed out the Thanksgiving staples on the same block that they grew up on. Chad said “This is where it all started. Flipping on mattresses and learning how to play ball“. Tyree followed up with, “That’s home base for us, 9th and 4th Ave [Newark, NJ], Grandma house. Grandma held the whole family together.”
The occasion functioned as a turkey drive firstly, and secondly it was a reunion. Many of the people that stopped by our station were not interested in grabbing a turkey; they simply wanted to say hi. Community elders, childhood friends and even one of Chad’s elementary school teachers pulled up to offer hugs and gratitude for the brothers’ initiative. “It’s just dope! All those guys, they love what I’m doing. They support it 100%. It felt like we were back home again. They show love every chance they get”, replied Chad. I had asked about the crew of brothers that stood by his side as he served the community. It honestly felt like they were protecting us from the patrolling police cars that circled the block the entire time we were out there, but I digress…
Another aspect of the day that couldn’t go unnoticed was how vigorously Tyree promoted the “The Brain Bowl”, a math, Black history and critical thinking competition. Over 100 students will compete in these mental challenges and the top 15 students will win $150 each. “I teach them the equation, but what if they don’t feel like they’re ever going to use it. We know experience is the best teacher so we can’t separate education from the rest of life. We must integrate [our] society into education.” Said the founder of the Black Genius brand. He meant it. Every single person that was gifted a turkey also received a Brain Bowl flyer. If they didn’t have children they were instructed to give the 4×5 card to somebody that does! “And after this is over, we’ll have another flyer. We all have a genius inside of us. As educators and adults is our obligation it help these kids acknowledge their genius,” he concluded.
With all of the struggles going on in the world, I was curious as to why the Barnes Brothers chose to combat holiday hunger. Tyree said “We did a block party, gave away hundreds of book bags with school supplies. Then we did a charity softball game. This time it’s a turkey drive. It is 6 of us. Statistically my siblings and I are not supposed to be here.” He continued, “None of us are in jail, on drugs or in a grave. It’s our obligation to give back.” Chad doubled down, “It’s all about giving back. Tyree presented the idea and me, being the oldest, looking from a big brother perspective, I’m gonna support it 100%.” Brotherly love at it’s finest! From the Hip Hop community to the educational sector, it’s safe to say the city of Newark is in good hands. Answering the age old question, am I my brothers keeper, yes I am.
As told by Jimmysodope
Video Link: https://www.instagram.com/p/CIBy-fgA1ba/