Visible Men Academy Celebrates Black Philanthropy Month

The Giving Coast

Pictured: Dr. Janjay Gehndyu supports the VMA mission to mentor and help boys develop into men. Photo courtesy of VMA.

August is Black Philanthropy Month and this year, Visible Men Academy (VMA) is joining #Give828. Give 8/28 is an annual initiative on Aug. 28 by the Young Black and Giving Back Institute (YBGB) to help promote financial support for Black-led and Black-benefitting grassroots organizations.

Visible Men Academy is a tuition-free K-5 public charter school for boys that serves students from Manatee and Sarasota counties. The mission of VMA is to provide boys with outstanding academic, character, and social education in a nurturing school environment.

Dr. Janjay Gehndyu is currently serving in his second year as principal of VMA. Previously a teacher, the pathway to principal for him came when he decided in 2012 to enter into the Higher Educational Leadership program at Nova Southeastern University. There, he wrote his dissertation focusing on personalized education and the benefits of focusing on the attributes that make that individual student successful. This is very much in line with VMA’s vision to provide a personalized education with a focus in character development wrapped in S.T.E.A.M. (The school’s emphasis on reading makes their curriculum S.T.R.E.A.M.) and also in line with YBGB’s vision to prepare the next generation of young, black professionals for effective community leadership and philanthropy such that they produce sustainable and innovative solutions to their communities’ most pressing issues.

"Give 28 comes at a critical time,” states Dr. Gehndyu. “VMA is on the ground every day, ensuring our communities are provided with a place where young men are provided with a high-quality personalized education at no cost to their families."

After graduating from VMA, students are encouraged to go to schools that fit their academic progress. “We have students attend Out of Door Academy, State College of Florida, Sarasota School of Arts and Sciences, and others,” shares Dr. Gehndyu. “Most of the funding to keep VMA tuition free comes from the generous donors who believe in our mission and the success of these young boys,” he adds.

You can support VMA by donating via this link: https://www.give828.org/organization/visible-men-academy and sharing your support on social media, tagging VMA in your posts with #Give828.


Pictured: Dr. Janjay Gehndyu supports the VMA mission to mentor and help boys develop into men. Photo courtesy of VMA.

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