‘Kickin It’ Launches Crowdfunding Campaign to Jump-Start Cultural Preservation Initiative

Kickin It University aims to provide courses in a wide range of content areas. (Photo courtesy Kickin It)

Kyra James, founder of Kickin It, a non-profit organization dedicated to preserving Virgin Islands’ history and culture through digital spaces, is excited to announce the launch of Kickin It University (KIU) and encourages the community to participate in a crowdfunding campaign to ensure that cultural education classes are inclusive and accessible to all.

KIU is an educational program designed to prepare Virgin Islanders to become guardians of their culture through classes, workshops and hands-on experiences. One of the resounding pillars of KIU is bridging connections across the Virgin Islands diaspora and providing a space in which Virgin Islanders can continue to engage with their heritage and community, whether physically in the territory or living abroad.
KIU hopes to revive traditional skills that have almost been lost with time, such as basket weaving, quadrille, and making traditional culinary dishes. “We envision a world where Virgin Islands culture is not only alive but thriving. Cultural preservation efforts have to evolve in order to survive. This organization’s goal is to do just that and KIU is one of the ways we plan to do it,” James said.
Donations to KIU will directly support the production of course content and cover the cost of materials and equipment needed to create engaging learning environments. KIU is also in search of course instructors who are interested in donating their time to sharing their knowledge of traditional Virgin Islands’ trades with KIU students. In addition to courses, KIU will produce grants and travel opportunities for Virgin Islands creatives to attend conferences abroad.
“We believe that knowledge and skill go hand in hand. By supporting our crowdfunding campaign, you help us to create opportunities for Virgin Islanders to access both, which will equip them to share what they’ve learned with future generations,” James continued.
“The Kickin It team is composed of Millennial and Gen Z Virgin Islanders who have a vision to reimagine how we engage with our culture and, in turn, how we encourage visitors to engage with our culture. We are Virgin Islanders, creating Virgin Islands-inspired content, to be consumed by other Virgin Islanders. This movement is for us, by us. Cultural preservation requires action; having V.I. pride is simply not enough to push our voices and unique stories forward. Preservation efforts have to evolve if we intend to keep up with the changing landscape of our society. This is an important part of our work,” James concluded.
To learn more about Kickin It University and to donate to the crowdfunding campaign, visit kickinituniversity.com.