Staff Report

MIAMI – Known for being one of Florida’s most vocal social justice organizations, Miami-based activist group The Dream Defenders invited philanthropists, community leaders, organizers and residents to join them as they hosted prison activist and author Elaine Brown, former Chair of the Black Panther Party, who is widely regarded as a pioneer in the Black Liberation Movement.

Aptly titled “A Dollar & A Dream,” the event was a fundraiser that served to highlight the work of the organization over the past five years. It took place at The ARC – Arts and Recreation Center, located at 675 Ali Baba Avenue in Opa-Locka from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Founded in the aftermath of the Trayvon Martin shooting by a group of twenty-somethings and college students who had limited resources and big dreams, The Dream Defenders have worked tirelessly since 2012 to improve the quality of life for youth from marginalized populations and end incarceration of young people in Florida.

With chapters in Miami, Ft. Lauderdale, and St. Petersburg, the organization achieves this through demonstrations and community organizing aimed at empowerment and a reduction in youth arrests.

“For five years, we have worked hard to not only shape the way society sees and respects our communities, but most importantly to shift the balance of power in our state from corporations to the people,” said umiselah (sic), Dream Defenders Co-Founder and Co-Director. “Now more than ever, it is imperative that black and brown youth, and adults of all ages, are able to tell their own stories, and to stay out of the clutches of handcuffs and cells.”

“A Dollar & A Dream” was designed to give the public deeper insight into the organization’s work around the state, and specifically within the community of Opa-Locka. Guests enjoyed poetry, live music, cocktails, shopping and the opportunity to meet Miami locals who are dedicated to similar causes.

To learn more about The Dream Defenders, visit