Young Leaders, Strong Cityis creating Racial Justice and Equity Youth Programs
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Young Leaders, Strong City (YLSC) was founded in 2014 to create a space for high school students to have conversations about race . Since its founding, YLSC has worked with over 2,500 youth from across the Dallas - Ft. Worth area to have conversations about race. YLSC's mission is to equip a network of students, educators, and their adult allies with tools to analyze, advocate, and dismantle systemic racism and inequities in themselves, their schools and communities through student organizing. Originally founded through the efforts of several local leaders and organizations, YLSC is housed at The Imagining Freedom Institute, LLC. YLSC programming is for the most part, community funded.
YLSC's primary program is an annual summit that brings together students from public, private and charter schools to share lived experiences through a racial equity lens. The summit is free to students which means in order to live our values, pay the local artists, organizers, activists, and educators that teach workshops, we need community support to make sure as many students as possible have access to the summit.
In addition to the annual summit, YLSC has created racial equity summits for school districts which have included Richardson ISD and Dallas ISD. While districts pay for this programming, often there are gaps in funding which limit either the number of students in attendance or number of workshops we are able to provide.
As importantly though, students from each of our summits have requested access to ongoing leadership training and the creation of a youth council. In order to be sustainable, we are hoping to hire a youth organizer to support student organizing efforts.
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