The Sonja Hayes Stone Center has long provided a space for Black-identifying students and the UNC community to celebrate Black culture. Following in the building’s spirit of being fully donor funded, the Stone Center Space Initiative (SCSI) is a student-run, student-led initiative created for Black-identifying students and Black organizations to connect, collaborate, and celebrate blackness at UNC-Chapel Hill. The students of the SCSI are seeking to raise donations to complete the building’s final stage: the garden-level. The Stone Center garden-level room will lay the groundwork to invest in future collaborative and networking endeavors. The intention is to incorporate both contemporary ideas from current students while simultaneously doing justice to the original vision of past students through surveys, research, and meetings. The coalition is looking to transform this room into a space that will have the facilities to foster collaboration between Black organizations, host social events, and build community on a campus where Black students have few places to come together. For years, students at UNC have rallied, marched, and raised the funds necessary to complete this ongoing endeavor. Like their predecessors, the SCSI has chosen to pick up this mantle of past student-led efforts to see this vision finally come to fruition.
The mission statement for the garden-level space: