THE 821 STORY
Jahi Mackey is the Program Director for The 821 Project, an organization that promotes global citizenship through social justice and intercultural education programming throughout the south Louisiana community. He has a Bachelor's Degree in International Studies with a minor in French from the University of New Orleans and a Masters of Arts in Intercultural Service Leadership and Management from the School of International Training Graduate Institute in Brattleboro, Vermont. He is also a published author and has special research interests in Intercultural Education and Social Justice Issues in Public Education.
About The Founder
Where Does The Name Come From?
"821 represents my birthplace in North Baton Rouge. Though I grew up in a working-class neighborhood, I never felt “poor” or at-risk. I considered my childhood to be culturally rich, filled with trips to the library, travel, and free time reading about everything from Black History to architecture in Singapore. I consider 821 as the foundation from which I built my journey. It was at my birthplace that I was taught to see the world as a place to explore and take care of, not to fear or merely survive in. This was empowering for me as an African American child growing up in North Baton Rouge, and something that stuck with me for the rest of my life."
- Jahi Mackey, Founder and Executive Director
Expanding Our Roots To The World
The official motto for The 821 Project is “expanding our roots to the world.” When one expands their roots to the world, they accomplish the following:
Expand their knowledge of the people, places and things that exist in this world
Demonstrate openness and humility when interacting with people of diverse backgrounds
Share their humanity with others and worked to make sure everyone else’s humanity is respected.
How We Got Started
The 821 Project was founded in the fall of 2016 and is a federally recognized 501c(3) nonprofit. Our first event was the inaugural installment of Tea and Truth, hosted on December 14, 2016. The rest is history.
Since then, 821 has hosted programming across the southeast Louisiana region, bringing people of various life experiences and cultural backgrounds together.