On February 19th, Civicorps hosted a Step Into Your Power Youth Summit where 42 students from Civicorps, Treasure Island Job Corps, MetWest High School, and College of Alameda came together to brainstorm solutions to community issues and then presented their ideas to a panel of community leaders.
After a moving keynote speech by Kamau Walton, Critical Resistance and Black Lives Matter East Bay, and a leadership panel by our Student Action Team, students broke into small-group work sessions where they brainstormed ideas that would have a positive social impact on their community. These sessions were lead by Student Action Team members, Civicorps staff, and activists from Young Invincibles.
Five campaigns were created and presented to a panel of community leaders:
1) #NoBeds media campaign highlight the scarcity of beds and the complexity of the public housing system
2) Urban Rejuvenation about how to rehabilitate urban blight
3) LGBTQ community meeting
4) Police Brutality Hurts community event with a community altar to honor the dead
5) Ban the Box organized walk out
Panel of Community Leaders:
Lieutenant Leronne Armstrong from the Oakland Police Department
Isabel Cortes from Senator Loni Hancock’s office
Mark Salinas from the National Equity Project
Rodney Brooks from Supervisor Keith Carson’s office
Diego Santiago from Assemblymember Rob Bonta’s office
Our panel of key leaders shared personal stories and advice for students about how to step into their power.
“If you are waiting around for someone else to solve problems, the answer is probably in you” – Mark Salinas
“Align yourself with people who believe in your potential.”
– Isabel Cortes
After listening to the powerful presentations, our Student Action Team chose two projects to put into action: the LGBTQ community meeting and #NoBeds: a media campaign about how to create adequate, accessible, affordable housing, especially for felons. Stay tuned for news as these projects get put into action!
The theme of the this summit was: Step Into Your Power — Transform Your Community and 100% of attendees said that they now feel inspired to make change in their community.
“We all have something inside of us that can useful to the world.”
“Today I learned specific steps that I can take to start civil action.”
“We need to put words into action. If you want to make a change in your community, you have to start with yourself.”
“We are the future.”
…and the future looks bright.
Check out more pictures from this amazing day of empowered social change.
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