Imagine with me a global urban camp, that each day, all around the world, people come to A Place To Be, to have enriching conversations, to experience a program that inspires them, or even to dialogue about their visions, a project, piece of art, a book, in the company of others. Some drop by to celebrate what they have achieved today. Others are there simply to find refuge in conversations that can support them through daily challenges of life in a safe and healthy meeting place. This collective shares resources, services and information that support the evolution of individuals within.

APTB ~ Global Urban Camp offers an array of social, recreational, educational, arts, wellness and development activities and events, including:
Wellness Seminars & Workshops promoting vitality and wholesome practices for living a healthy, abundance lifestyle. Arts programs, including classes and performances.

Individual and group coaching. Social and Recreational activities which provide the opportunity to relax, bond, through exchanging with others in the community. The long-term vision is to have A Place To Be franchises across the globe, and during this Covid period, we are starting with
virtual programming.


(Founder’s Statement)
I am Dr. Byron Johns, a community organizer, and the founder of A PLACE TO BE – a global urban camp, where the wealth of every lived experience is leveraged for the benefit of all within our community.

I have often been told, I am a connector: “Everywhere you go, you create community.” I have done so in New York City, Chicago, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Allentown, Washington, DC and Nairobi, Kenya, Cape Town & Durban South Africa, where I have worked collectively to organize and develop diverse communities of vibrant creatives, corporate & community leaders, and change makers who are making a difference in the world.
We all are communal beings, yet like me, you may have wondered: how do we connect in ways that enrich us all, and leverage the diverse talents and gifts of age, experience, knowledge, creativity, and youth? Over the years, I have been calling the context of our work: A Place To Be (APTB). For me, APTB has been a collective, communal movement -- of creatives, corporate leaders and change makers, where everyone is uplifted and supported to
connect with each other in ways that are enriching and

The philosophical foundation of the A Place To Be, a global urban camp, evolved from years of lived practice in the arenas of transformational work, social emotional learning, conflict and project management, engagement in arts and media, African American culture, wholistic well-being and studies of the contemporary or VUCA (violital, uncertain, complex, ambiguous) Environment.

Today, I am inviting you to come with us as APTB community finds expression in new virtual platforms, and programs that engage the world.


I believe we are all on a journey to realize greater connection. My own need for community is steeped in Philly’s rich Black Culture during the 60’s & 70’s.

For much of my young life growing up in the hood, I have felt alone, different, somewhat an outcast because I had aspirations to “fulfill my potential.” As an ambitious child, there was little support for futures beyond what was happening in the present. There I witnessed the many tragedies that came from the ills of living only for the day and succumbing to alcoholism and drug addiction, crime and incarceration, abuse and death.

The trauma of living through seeing the wasted lives, helped me to set limits and drove my passion to get out into the world, away from what felt like a trap - no place for my true aspirations to manifest. Yet, the bonds of belonging to a community where everyone knows each other and have a
sense of commonality to a place is a wholesome feeling that I have longed for since leaving my childhood home. So, my innate sensibility has been to cultivate that wholesome space of community with a focus on providing a space for people to fulfill their potential.

This has been what I have done throughout my life: worked with others to provide environments for individuals, primarily staffed by and serving people of African Descent, to be nurtured, inspired, empowered and transformed. Together we have been a community of culture, rich in knowledge, with a distinct flair of style and creativity, where everyone has the commonality of connection, love being together, enjoying social activities, serving, learning, and exploring the world together.


My experience spans a variety of communities from New York City schools, fortune 500 companies, to various small business, start-up companies, and arts organizations. Through my work in the US, Africa, and Europe, I have trained hundreds of community and corporate leaders, managers,
and other professionals, and strategically leveraged people resources in fulfillment of organizational objectives. I have personally managed staffs of various sizes to deliver over 50 concerts and productions, and many large and small seminars. From this experience, I have come to believe that a big part of grounding ourselves during this revolutionary time of change is creating our own forums that provide what we seek – refuge and leverage for bringing forth our visions.

I have acquired a doctorate in Organizational Management and Consulting and a Masters’ in Performing Arts Management to hone my skills to be able to facilitate myself and others in developing venues for our forums and to launch initiatives from conception to full implementation. A Place To
Be, a global urban camp, offers contemporary, innovative programming connecting Africans (Blacks) from the diaspora, through shared resources, dialogue, and engagement (interactive) - based learning.


When you meet Byron Johns, you are in the presence of an individual who is deeply and authentically committed to developing his personal vision into an active leadership practice that benefits all who he encounters. He is thoughtful and quiet, a keen observer and listener, and able to ask the right kinds of questions that naturally propel one into a new understanding, lens or approach to Life's inevitable lessons.

● Heather (Cox) Kamia, Capella University Fellow, MSW Program

● Having worked with Dr. Byron Johns as a client and a strategic partner, I can say that he takes the most holistic approach to personal and team development I have ever experienced. Dr. Johns' attention to detail on nuances of language and word choices are transformative for both interpersonal communication and personal goal setting. Perhaps the greatest testament to the quality of his work is that ten years after engaging with Dr. Byron Johns in his 90-Day Enhancement Program, I find myself as such an integral part of my local economic, political, and social context that I 
am having to figure out how to carve time out to seek him out for any of his upcoming projects.

Daryl Browne
Owner, Soleil's Salt Cave (https://saltcavenh.com)
Co-Founder, Voicengage (https://voicengage.co)
Selectman, Town of Exeter, NH (https://www.exeternh.gov)
Author, "You Are the Gift" and "Journey of 1,000 Breaths"
When Byron worked with our youth, I used to imagine him as a big nainny that they would come to suck on. He just seemed to have a way of nurturing them. Ameye Ballard, mother of a Positive Youth Troupe Member, Mind Builders Creative Arts Center
How You Can Participate

If this calls to you and you would like to participate in the A Place To Be, a global urban camp collective, complete the information below and we will be in touch to have a dialogue about your interests and how you see yourself being engaged.
  • Focus - participation is based upon bringing something one is inspired to cultivate from one’s aspiration – heart’s desire - work on something in the network.
  • Generate your participation “you have to do you” – make it work for yourself and support others in doing so.
  • Honor and value the collective and its members with affirmation, acknowledgement, appreciation.
  • Hold the collective as a sacred space.
  • Contribute to the well-being of all by managing one’s health.
  • Allow yourself to be loved and valued as a collective member.
  • Feast on the abundance that exists within us as a collective.
  • Everyone has something to offer; be open to receiving the offerings and to offering your gifts as a contribution.