Read While You Wait Seeks Barbershop Partners in Avoyelles and Rapides

In an effort to link the African American male barbershop experience with positive early literacy exposure, Truly Thrive will be supplying strategically selected books, targeted for African American boys in grades K-5, to barbershops in Avoyelles and Rapides through its new Read While You Wait initiative. Through the initiative, boys will be able to read the books during their visits to a participating barbershop and after every ten books read, receive a free haircut.

Truly Thrive is currently accessing barbershops in Avoyelles and Rapides to become Read While You Wait locations. Each participating barbershop will receive fifteen curated titles (start-up book set), one colorful bookshelf, and a window decal. If you are a barbershop owner and interested in making your shop a Read While You Wait location, please fill out the form below and we will contact you shortly.

Seeking Applicants for Boys and Men of Color Leadership Initiative in Avoyelles

Truly Thrive is pleased to officially launch the application process for the inaugural My Brother’s Keeper Leadership Academy.

Investing in leadership development is vital to ensuring the growth, sustainability, and impact of leaders and organizations working to tackle the issue of achievement for boys and young men of color in Avoyelles Parish.

Truly Thrive will bring together a cohort of 20 emerging leaders for a customized leadership development experience. During the My Brother’s Keeper Leadership Academy, the diverse cohort of 20 fellows will participate in a six-month learning community that will help ensure individual effectiveness and impact in organizational leadership within the broader field of black male achievement.

Ready to apply? Apply here today!

My Brother’s Keeper Leadership Academy — FAQs:

Who is an emerging leader? Truly Thrive envisions the emerging leaders within the 20-person cohort representing multiple sectors, including the business community; nonprofits; community groups; policymakers; experts in children’s and youth issues; concerned individuals; and young people themselves. Emerging leaders in the field of black male achievement are defined as:

  • Men and women of all races who are responsible for advancing black male achievement outcomes within their organizations and networks
  • Less than 10 years of experience working in the black male achievement field (no age restrictions)
  • In some cases, the emerging leader will be someone who is advancing black male achievement work within the broader landscape of their organizations or network
  • Additionally, the emerging leader can be a millennial leader who has taken on the mantle of building out a black male achievement framework within their organization or network

If I work outside of the Avoyelles Parish area, can I still apply for the My Brother’s Keeper Leadership Academy? Unfortunately, only emerging leaders in the black male achievement field in the Avoyelles Parish area are eligible to apply for the My Brother’s Keeper Leadership Academy.

What are some of the benefits of the My Brother’s Keeper Leadership Academy?

  • Join a fellowship cohort that will participate in a six-month learning community
  • 1-on-1 coaching sessions
  • Participation in Truly Thrive-organized events (Back to School Festival, Thought Leader Convening, etc.)
  • An opportunity to apply for mini-grants


If you have any questions regarding the My Brother’s Keeper Leadership Academy, please email

Welcome to Our New Website

Over the past year, as we have worked to implement our new strategy, we have found it necessary to change how — and how often — we communicate with all the people who are vital to our work: nonprofits, businesses, communities, educators, policymakers, and ordinary citizens.

That led us to create this website. It will provide ongoing updates about the three cross-cutting strategies we deploy in our work:

  • Strengthening Organizations, through financial support, technical assistance, and capacity building
  • Leading Collaboration, by bringing together and connecting the most respected advocates to help build an unbreakable safety net
  • Influencing Systems, by using data to inform policies and decision making, and support solutions that work

Through this website, we also want to showcase our partners and the important work they are doing, and we want to share timely and relevant articles, reports, videos and other content from a variety of sources. These insights can inform and influence our collective work.

We will be posting fresh content weekly, so we hope you will make regular visits to see what’s new.