Bounce’s ‘Johnson’ Partners with
Big Brothers Big Sisters,
Spotlighting The Power of Mentorship
Bounce TV, the popular broadcast and multi-platform entertainment network serving African Americans, announced today its latest initiative as part of a broader partnership with Big Brothers Big Sisters of America (BBBSA), the preeminent one-to-one youth mentoring organization in the United States. The partnership will integrate BBBS into an upcoming episode of “Johnson,” Bounce’s popular dramedy focusing on four lifelong best friends. The initiative will center around the importance of Black men becoming mentors, in alignment with BBBSA’s bold new brand campaign “It Takes Little to be Big,” aimed at challenging myths and shifting perceptions around mentoring.
There are currently more than 30,000 kids on BBBS’ waitlist, and the majority are boys of color, looking to be matched with a mentor. To address this urgent need, the organization aims to encourage more volunteers, particularly men of color, to sign up to be mentors.
The “Johnson” storyline, which will be introduced in the season three finale, will see Greg (portrayed by series creator Deji LaRay) signing up to mentor a teen and in the process learning more about the organization. The episode premieres Saturday, Oct. 7 at 8 p.m. ET/7 p.m. CT on Bounce.
To celebrate the occasion, Bounce will also host BBBS mentors (“Big”) and mentees (“Littles”) for a “Bigs and Littles” episode watch party on Oct. 7 at BBBS of Metro Atlanta, the shooting location for the season finale. As part of the watch party, high-school-aged guests will have the opportunity to meet with David Hudson, head of original programming for Scripps, for a Q&A. The campaign will also be supported and amplified across social media by both BBBS and Bounce-affiliated accounts.
“Over three seasons, ‘Johnson’ has established itself as a series that isn’t afraid to correct stereotypes of Black men, and partnering with Big Brothers Big Sisters of America works well to do just that,” said Hudson.
“Bounce serves as a pivotal voice and platform for Black communities, making this collaboration especially powerful,” said Artis Stevens, BBBSA president and CEO. “Our partnership with Bounce enables us to demonstrate the transformative power of mentorship, especially within communities of color. Through this episode of ‘Johnson’ we are shifting perceptions about the time and expertise required to be a mentor, showing that you don’t need to be perfect, you just need to be present, to make an impact.”
“Johnson” is shot in Atlanta and produced in partnership with Eric C. Rhone and Cedric The Entertainer's A Bird & A Bear Entertainment, Deji LaRay (the show's creator) and Thomas Q. Jones' Midnight Train Productions. LaRay and Jones serve as showrunners and executive producers; Rhone, Cedric The Entertainer and Reesha L. Archibald serve as executive producers. The ensemble cast is led by LaRay (“Bosch,” “Greenleaf”), Jones (“P. Valley,” “Luke Cage”), Philip Smithey (“Murderville,” “The Rookie”) and Derrex Brady (“NCIS,” “First”) with D.L. Hughley, Terri J. Vaughn and Earthquake. Guest stars in season three include Cedric The Entertainer, “Living Single” alum TC Carson, and performances from hip hop/rap artist Patrick Paige and genre-bending musician Samoht.
Bounce TV local channel information can be found here. Viewers can catch up on “Johnson” and all Bounce originals on Brown Sugar, Bounce's subscription video-on-demand service. Visit www.BrownSugar.com for more information.
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