Click the Logo back to our website


Christmas Party is Back!!!!

We are having our annual Christmas party!

Happy Holidays Everyone, Please Join AVillage Tonight for our annual Christmas Party, Kids Get Free Toys...Hot Dogs and Hamburgers....and a Visit from Santa! Hope to see you there at Trinity Alliance starting at 6pm, ends at 9pm, we will also dance the night away, Ho! Ho! Ho!!!! Merry Christmas

December 23rd from 6-9pm
at Trinity Alliance, 15 Trinity Place, Albany

We'll have music, food, games and a visit from Santa!


About Black bookstores - The closure of Hue-Man Bookstore

by Willie White, Executive Director

Sacred space is disappearing from our communities with too little fanfare: the Black bookstore. Recently, one of the largest Black bookstores in the nation—Hue-Man Bookstore—announced it would shutter its doors in Harlem, the proverbial capital of Black America. Hue-Man is just the latest in a line of Black bookstores in particular, and bookstores in general, that are disappearing from the urban landscape. As bookstores continue to go out of business--- if we’re not careful---a culture of literacy, interpersonal engagement and community building may disappear with them.

I am part of the problem. I spend more time and money purchasing books online than going into brick and mortar bookstores. But there was a time when the bookstore was one of my favorite destinations because it held a wealth of information and people who showed me another side to my community, culture, and intellectual life. Black bookstores have never been mega-stores like Barnes & Noble but often have been small individually-run libraries of community enrichment.

The Black bookstore, to me, has always used an inverted capitalism model. Let me explain. Black bookstores have historically been spaces to expose visitors to an alternative set of literatures, histories, and authors. When I first began visiting Black bookstores I would ask them if they carried specific titles. Many times they would not, but a worker or patron would suggest an alternative that they did have in stock. I soon learned to enter and ask, “What do you recommend?” From there I’d be exposed to books that covered revolutionaries on the continent to novels on Caribbean immigrants in the United States. In this way, the inventory wasn’t driven by consumer demand; instead the inventory created a demand among consumers. While intimidating at first, once I became acclimated, it was liberating and enlightening.

Forthcoming research by Marc Lamont Hill stresses the importance of Black bookstores beyond simply selling books. For example, each month Reuben Quansah would coordinate and run a book club at Hue-Man that discussed books ranging from Manning Marable’s tome on Malcolm X to Steve Harvey’s “Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man.” The diversity of book subjects was only exceeded by the diversity of minds present, from elders who organized with the Nation of Islam, to high school students who had just been exposed to “Assata.” These types of interactions and discussions can’t be substituted for with Amazon recommendations or even Google+ hangouts. We need Black bookstores because we need more chances to see the diversity and depth of our people. Bookstores provide a place to understand the realities we’ve faced and to plot the path we must tread.

Nationally, traditional bookstores are going the way of the dinosaur and even large-scaled retail stores like Borders have not been able to make ends meet. In seeing Hue-Man close, I’m reminded of strings of independent bookstores like Nkiru Books in Brooklyn, Liberation Bookstore in Harlem, and many others that have come and gone, and of stores like Marcus Books in Oakland, which struggles to remain open. Hue-Man, like others, is exploring different models for online vending and potential partnerships, but this is still a challenge in tepid financial times. Even as we explore these new models we’ll need to make sure that the value of bookstores beyond the books remains for future generations. The hope for Black bookstores is dim, but the need for them is great.

Dr. R. L'Heureux Lewis-McCoy is an Assistant Professor of Sociology and Black Studies at the City College of New York. His work concentrates on race, education and gender. You can follow him on Twitter at @dumilewis or visit his official website


AVillage Community Clean-up

It Really Does Take AVillage!

Just finished cleaning our community with 25 Saint Rose students. Had a great time!! After cleaning our Community, this wonderful young lady came by our work site and offered us to come by her church and have lunch. Ms. Ruth Coleman-Nelson, she fed 25 hungry students at Mt. Calvary Baptist Church on Alexander Street, where the Great! "Pastor Dixon" resides. That goes to show that it Really does takes AVillage! The Students were very appreciative.Thank you Ms. Ruth Coleman-Nelson


"AVillage's First Annual Mississippi Day"

Hello Everyone, AVillage would like to invite you to attend our first annual "Mississippi Day Celebration" we are projected to commence this very exciting event on September 15, 2012. You are invited to share in the planning of this great day, we are also asking all Mississippian's to call up your family members and tell them the great news.

We are coming together and we are presently looking for cooks, organizers, musicians, softball teams, basketball teams, committee people and much more. Please stay tuned for future updates.


Find Your Way in Life

by Willie White

One thing that I've learned over the years is that you have to find your way in life. I'm beginning to find my way. We take so much for granted in our daily lives. People are hurting and we are to busy complaining about the small things.

I was shopping this morning at Price Chopper. A lady came in the Market and told one of the worker that a man had passed out on the sidewalk. When I got outside, I went over to him and said that everything was going to be ok. I told him to hang in there, the ambulance was on the way. He started to cry. I asked him what was wrong. he said that they shouldn't have called the ambulance. I told him that he had bumped his head and that he should go and get checked out.

I was drinking a nice hot cup of coffee that I had just got from dunkin donut. He looked at my coffee and said, "I wish I had one of those." That coffee was so good but I gave it to him. You would think that that coffee was gold. he really appreciated it and I'm so glad I gave it to him.

I waited until the ambulance arrived and explained to the EMT what had happen, then I was on my way home. When I was driving away, I couldn't help from crying myself. I thought about how much people are hurting and how we, as a society takes so much for granted, I believe I'm finding my way in life. In order to find your way, you must first get your self out of the way, if you know what I mean.


Tale of Two Cities March

Our communities should never depend on Politicians.  We should do it ourselves. Now if you are trying to get a political dig in, that's not my style.  I look to the People!


2012 Summer A+Plus Program

AVillage and Wmht are collaborating this summer with the A+Plus Program, formerly known as the summer youth employment program. We are working with teens to show them how to be reporters. We had our first orientation on Monday. It was very exciting! we look forward to our second session, which will happen today at 10:30am. This is promised to be a great experience for our Youth! Just to see the stars in their eyes and the joy that our children have in their heart, is all I need.

I know that this will be a big success for our children and the community as a whole. I spoke at the common council last night and told them about the program. I also asked them if our students could interview them. They were all happy to accommodate our request. God put me in the right place when he allowed me to be able to interact with our children. I have very little to offer but what I have to offer is better than nothing. Our children are amazing!

We are also very proud to have the opportunity to work with Amanda J. Lester andKatherine Pasquini Jetter of Wmht. These young ladies are totally amazing. Just to take out of their busy schedule and come down to our neighborhood and work with our children is really something to be commended. I'm very happy to have known them. Our children will go into the community and interview members of their families, neighbors, elected officials and many more. Our intentions are to interview people like Dr. Alice Green, Ms. Clara Phillips, The Mayor, Judges, police officers, like Ben Sturges and others.

Please Stay Tuned....Much More To Come...AVillage/Wmht

Startling Facts - People of Color

1. While people of color make up about 30% of the U.S.A Population, they account for 60% of the prison population.
2. According to the Bureau of justice statistics, 1 in 3 black men can expect to go to prison in their life time.
3. Students of color faces harsher punishments in school than their white peers.
4. The war on drugs has been waged primarily in communities of color where people of color are more likely to receive higher offences according to the human rights commission. and it goes on and on...

"WAKE UP PEOPLE" It time for us to take a stand and demand JUSTICE!!!, No Kid Should have to go to JAIL, Regardless of COLOR!

Education is the answer, Parental Involvement is the PATH, and Community Involvement is the Way! It all Takes AVillage.


Call for Community Invlovment

Hey Community Members, we need your help!!!, Our Children/Seniors are In Need of Love/Leadership. All they need is for us to do the right thing by them. Let's be an example to them. All we need to do is show them that they are great and can be anything that their little hearts desire!

We (AVillage) like to lead by example, so if we do our part, will you do yours?

Please join us each and every Thursday for our weekly meetings. We meet at 3 Lincoln Square, from 5pm-7pm.

As you approach the building, we are the door on the far right hand side.There will always be an Agenda on the office door. Hope to see you there. It Really Does Take AVillage To Raise our Children and Take care of our Seniors!! Please Call 518-859-4305 for more Info:


Our Hero - Medgar Evers

by Willie White

Medgar Evers is one of my heroes. We are from the same state. I read a lot about him when I was a kid. I Love this Man and what he stood for. He stood for us all and he died for us all.

Reflecting for a moment, after a long day at work, drive home to be with your wife and kids. They are waiting up for you and you pull into your driveway. They hear your car and then, they hear a gun shot, a coward shot him in the back. His wife and kids race outside to find him crawling on the ground to make it to his front door, blood everywhere. Just like that, he's gone. Taken away from his family. My heart hurts to write this. His Spirit Lives Forever in my heart.

The Autobiography of Medgar Evers: A Hero’s Life and Legacy Revealed Through His Writings, Letters, and Speeches


Come to Learn How the Criminal Justice System Impacts People of Color

Please Join Us on April 25th at Schenectady County Community College, the Program will start at 6pm until 8pm, "The New Jim Crow Chang Gang and Too Deep Entertainment", Featuring Dr. Alice Green and The NJC Report.

How the criminal justice system impacts people of color in our communities? Conviction and arrest report.

from  Benita Law-Diao


We Made National News!!

Activist Puts Albany Neighborhood On The Bus Maphttp://www.npr.org/2012/04/04/149715433/activist-puts-albany-neighborhood-on-the-bus-map

Willie White pushed for the creation of a new bus route for his previously underserved neighborhood in Albany, N.Y.

Marie Cusick for NPR