Monday, December 19, 2016

Event Two

On Friday December 19th I attended the WHO ARE YOU(TH)? event at the Trade Pop Up on the east side of Providence which was put on by Youth In Action.  This exhibit was really cool and insightful.  I thought the youth worked really hard and put this art gallery together well and put a lot of thought and detail into it.  When I first walked into the gallery there were two youth that were greeting you at the door.  They introduce themselves, the project, and what it was about.  They explained that the event was about the social injustices in our society, how they see their own identities, and what the identities of others look like.  I liked this because I knew exactly what was going on I didn't have to try and figure it out on my own.  They had all different types of art pieces along the walls.  The first one that I saw consisted of multiple people's pictures with quotes on where they came from and how they feel about that and what makes them want to push for change.  One of the quotes on the wall said, "I grew up in a predominantly white middle class area, and this bothered me, so I set out to find answers."  This one stood out to me because I could relate to it.  Other quotes were longer and some were shorter but all of them were well written and interesting to read.  Some of the youth really have some deep thoughts.  Some were more in depth on how they feel they are perceived and how the places they come from are.

Another area of the exhibit had projects where the youth had written their own stories in real books, they chopped up the pages and wrote over the text with their own stories they wanted to tell.  One youth told a story about their gender identity and how they wished gender was not a real thing, and how categorizing gender is delusional and makes no sense.

The next art project was a voice recording on interviews youth held with strangers.  This was powerful to be one on one with the recording.  I was really focused on what the people were saying because it's very personal sitting alone with headphones on.  There were other projects where there were statistics that had responses on them with sticky notes.

The space was loud and noisy but everything made sense and flowed rather well.  The youth knew what they were doing and they led the whole event which I thought was amazing.  The adults were walking around blending in with the crowd and just supporting the youth and making sure they had everything they needed which I thought was nice.  It was amazing to see how powerful youth can be and how they see themselves in such a big and troubled world and how they feel about what needs change.

This was an event that was part of Youth In Action and it was an art gallery showing but Youth In Action does a lot more then that but as far as art galleries done by youth New Urban Arts is a program that focuses on art work done by high school youth.  They are all about the Arts which is different then what Youth In Action does but it was something similar to what the youth at Youth In Action were doing.  Here is New Urban Arts website:
Another place that focuses on art is AS220 and their website:
Here is another link that is set towards youth with Dyslexia and how these programs help them achieve the artistic abilities and showcase them in different areas of the country.  There are two websites here one for the home page of the site and one for the link to the art work some youth have done.

Below are some pictures of the event that took place on December 19th. I wasn't sure if I was allowed to take pictures but these are a few from that night.

Image may contain: 1 person, text
Image may contain: 4 people, indoor
Image may contain: 3 people, indoor

Thursday, December 8, 2016

This is Youth Work

I was reading through some of the chapters here and one really stuck out to me.  It was chapter 3 where there were a bunch of short stories and one short story really stuck out to me and hit home for me.  That was ‘I wouldn’t be the person I am today’: One young man on why young people need youth clubs.  This hits home for me because I was part of a youth club when I was younger and its part of the reason of who I am today.  My club was the Boys and Girls Club which was a little different then the club in this story but the concept was the same and it kept us out of trouble and it was a safe place for us.  Like in the story there were role models and I had one too and his name was George.  Most of you know the story of George and what he did for us as kids and young adults and what we did for him after he had passed.  The short story just made me remember all the fun times I had at the club and what the adults there did for me and why it's part of the reason why I want to help kids today because if it wasn't for George I don't know where I'd be today.

For the elevator speech this short story made me change my pitch just a little bit.  So when someone asks me why Youth Development or what is that I can say:

Youth Development is a program that consists of three different avenues.  It is a mix between Social Work, Education, and Non-Profit.  You get a wide range of all three styles of working with youth.  It gives you the tools to tackle any task and help any child that needs help.  I want you to think about when you were a child and who was your mentor or who was you coach or who taught you about things that you use today.  You have that person?  That person helped mold you in some way to be the person you are today.  That's Youth Development, I want to help youth become the best people that they can be and help them see their full potential and then help them get there.  It's all about the kids now and always.    

Event Post- Open House at RIC

One of the events that I had attended was the Open House at RIC.  I had never been to an open house and wasn't sure what to expect.  Once I had arrived it was explained what I needed to do and because I am outgoing and can talk to people easily I was able to speak with some parents, grandparents, and potential students about attending RIC and what Youth Development was all about.  I got some tips from Leslie on how to go about talking about YDEV and after the first time I did it, it became easier to explain it.  I used my elevator speech and added to it.  I told people that RIC was a good school to attend and it was affordable.  I also spoke about YDEV and how the program had helped me understand what my passion in life was.  I told people that YDEV was a mix of Educational classes, Non-Profit classes, and Social Work classes and that this gives the student a taste of what it is to work with youth and you don't have to go right into those areas immediately.  I told them my story and how I learned so much from the program and that I will have my degree in YDEV in the spring and will be moving into the Masters Program for Social Work.  I let them know that this was a route that was good for me because I knew I wanted to work with youth but didn't know what area I wanted to go in and YDEV gave me a taste of three paths that work with youth and then by the end of my BA I was ready to move on to SW.  I handed them pamphlets and gave all the information and said that if they were interested in working with youth and wanted to pursue fields like they ones that YDEV teach then this was the program for them. 

I had a lot of fun meeting new people and meeting potential students of RIC.  I also had fun with the people who attended to help out and it is something that I would like to do again because I believe that YDEV is a great program and it really helped me focus on what I wanted to do with my life.