Los Angeles, like many cities, is divided– racially, socially, economically. Our nation is in a state of civil unrest, as demonstrated by protests and arguments surrounding critical issues such as police relations and LGBTQ+ rights. We need more opportunities for people to connect to better understand each other and the complexities of these issues. Our most precious resource – youth – have the potential to come together to confront these issues but are disconnected and not being activated.
Why young people?
- The skills critical for effective leadership, including the capacity to understand and interact with others, are developed most deeply in adolescence and young adulthood
- Adolescence is a key strategic time to engage youth in leadership, civic engagement and service initiatives – after which welfare dependency, limited productivity, and other social problems become life patterns for those who are not engaged