Indie Soul Spotlight: Root Branch Academy


— The chaos that engulfed the entire community and left us with so much work and conversation to have. The only problem is, we are not listening to or have invited those to the table to partake of the conversation on how to rebuild the City of Baltimore. There two groups, women and young people. Vonnya Pettigrew wants to change that.

Pettigrew was affected by the riots. Her home on 26th street was fire bombed. She was left for the new few days looking for a place to call home but in the process was thinking of a way to reach those who have a voice but were not being heard. “I think we need to actively find solutions to address educating our kids and teaching them to self-love themselves. We need action not constant conversation,” says Pettigrew.

Her company, Root Branch Film Academy, offers a three-week summer film enrichment program onsite at the Reginald F. Lewis Museum for youth ages (8 – 12). This summer, the young media makers will produce a short documentary-styled film profiling one of the museum’s most popular exhibitions. Adds Pettigrew, “Our young people need to know where they come from in order to do better. That is our job as parents, as adults, and role models. They need guidance and direction. This project is about educating letting them learn history so they can come to a better of an understanding as to who they are and what other have gone through for them. This way are they not only learn about being a filmmaker, they are learning history.”

Space is Limited! There is still time to register as classes begin next week. Visit:, for more details.