Youth group hosts annual event
BY WILLIAM F. WEST
Thursday, March 14, 2019
Dr. Tiffany Tyson said there are teens with lots of issues to deal with as she prepares for her fourth Young Ladies Empowerment Series to be held later this month in Rocky Mount.
“They’re facing depression,” Tyson said. “Sometimes teens are being targeted to be a part of gangs. Sometimes teens are being bullied in class. And so sometimes being bullied can lead to depression and anxiety.”
Tyson emphasized sometimes the bullying can result in a feeling one doesn’t deserve anything better.
“But I want to tell young teens and adults that you do deserve better — and you are worth it,” Tyson said.
The Young Ladies Empowerment Series is a one-day annual gathering. The 2019 series is set for noon to 4 p.m. March 30 at the Rocky Mount Event Center.
The series in the past has sought to address roadblocks preventing young ladies from reaching their potential by identifying issues, educating them on how to cope with those issues and empowering them to be in control.
This year, the series is going to include young men.
And a featured speaker is going to be Moziah “Mo” Bridges, the teen from Memphis, Tenn., who established a successful bow tie company. Bridges appeared on the television show “Shark Tank” and signed a seven-figure deal to market bow ties for the NBA.
Tyson said when she was leading a summer camp last year, many parents asked her, “Well, what do you have for the boys?”
“We still are providing our traditional program, but we wanted to add some features for the young men,” she said.
The overall theme of the 2019 series is going to be “Boss Up Love Yourself” because Tyson said a lot of times people are dealing with old baggage.
“They may have been bullied in the past. They have come out of abusive relationships,” she said. “And so we want people to be able to forgive what has happened to them in the past — and then be able to move on and be able to create a life for themselves where they’re able to love themselves again.”
Additionally, the 2019 series is going to include a panel discussion.
Tyson said state Rep. Kandie Smith, D-Pitt, is going to be speaking about how to be a leader and not a follower and said marketing consultant Marilyn Bryant-Tucker is going to be speaking about entrepreneurship.
Tyson also said the panel discussion is going to include Rocky Mount police officer Laura Middleswarth speaking about girls and gangs.
The panel discussion also is going to include Becky Hollis, a case manager with the Opportunities Industrialization Center, speaking about teen pregnancy and Shameca Ricks, a clinical social worker, speaking about teen depression, Tyson added.
And the series is going to include a fashion show for youth of both genders and all ages.
In advance of the series, there’s going to be a model casting call event from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday at the OIC Community Health Education Center at 1060 Pinehurst Drive.
Tyson is from Wilson and is trained in nursing and psychiatry. She provides psychiatric services for children and adults at the OIC and also is CEO of Tyson Multimedia.
Tyson said the genesis of the Young Ladies Empowerment Series can be traced to Forest Hills Middle School.
She said that’s when the school’s then-principal said she believed young girls needed motivation in their self-esteem and also needed to be motivated to have careers in science.
She said she agreed to work with a group of girls at the school, in what became a program with activities, guest speakers and discussions about what the girls were dealing with.
She said she wanted to take the program up to a different level, which resulted in her forming the Young Ladies Empowerment Series.
She said the series attracted approximately 50 people the first year, approximately 150 the next year and approximately 350 last year.
“So I think it has progressed pretty well,” she said.
For more information about tickets for the model casting call and the series, call 252-481-4884 or go to tysonmultimedia.com.