Fighting Poverty with Passion
October has been my favorite month in my two years of service! Over the month, YouthShift held 9 youth focus groups organizations with 107 young people. We also met with the Urban League PRIDE parenting group and held a community action meeting where 50 youth based organizations were represented.
Youth Run NOLA is a youth development non profit that creates and empowers a community of healthy, young leaders through running. We sat down with 22 young people from 4th to 7th grade and listened to what they experience in their day to day lives. What questions would they ask the New Orleans community? What were their dreams? What did they want to be when they grew up? What do they love about living in New Orleans? Their neighborhood? Their school? What do they not like about living in New Orleans? What challenges are they facing in their life? What does youth voice and leadership mean to them? What are their hopes and dreams? We will take their answers and incorporate it into the larger plan set to launch in December. We are also following up with each group so that the young people have the opportunity to stay engaged if they want.
Adinkra NOLA is a Louisiana home study program serving grades Pre-K-12 in an individualized, experiential learning environment to develop life-long learners who value community, education and culture.We listened to 22 young people and listened to what their day to day experience is. What are the main challenges they are facing? What do they think is missing to support young people? How is a home study program different than a traditional school experience? What is better or worse? How would they like to be engaged by the community? What issues do they wish were being addressed? We will take their answers and incorporate it into the larger plan set to launch in December. We are also following up with each group so that the young people have the opportunity to stay engaged if they want.
The YouthShift Community Action Meeting brought together 50 youth based organizations to provide feedback on the YouthShift data collection efforts to date. The beauty of cross sector collaboration is bringing diverse perspectives into the same room and trying to address complex issues together. We are using the feedback from the youth and parent focus groups and the community action meeting to inform what the next steps for YouthShift should be. What are the needs we should prioritize? How can we as a collaborative best support the work across the community? YouthShift will be producing the updated report on December 15th. Stay tuned to see the plan of action to improve the lives of New Orleans children and youth!