Conference Focus is Elevating Youth Voice

 

This week, two of our YouthForce Staff, Career Internship Program Director Lareesa Blakely and Case Manager Valerie Macaraan, had the opportunity to attend the 2018 Bridge Conference, an event hosted by School’s Out Washington. “It was an amazing conglomerate of youth development professionals, program directors, educators, youth advocates, and facilitators from all over the nation. The theme of the workshop was ‘Elevate Youth Voice’  and the numerous workshops that were offered throughout the day focused on ways that we can make youth voice the center of our programs,” Lareesa explains.

 

“A highlight for me were the multiple safe spaces that were offered for us to express our experiences,” Lareesa shared.

 

Lareesa and Valerie pictured here along with several representatives from Boys & Girls Clubs around the county.

 

Throughout the day YouthForce staff were able to attending workshops covering topics like:  Leveraging Stories to Better Serve Students, Tailoring Your Program Based on Youth Development Trends, Are You Ready to Be Radical? Preparing Ourselves to Center Youth Voice in our Learning Spaces, Reclaiming Our Time: Recentering Marginalized Voices by Fostering Communities, Living While Colored, and Youth-Led Internships: Empowering a Next-Gen Workforce to Bridge the Opportunity Gap.

 

I feel I’ve gained more skills a youth worker and will continue to strive for progress in youth empowerment.”

 

“A highlight for me were the multiple safe spaces that were offered for us to express our experiences,” Lareesa shared.  Valerie agreed, saying, “I appreciated that many of my workshop presenters encouraged everyone to open to each other and actually get to know one another. After attending the two-day conference, I feel I’ve gained more skills a youth worker and will continue to strive for progress in youth empowerment.”