Every year the Queer Youth Task Force helps send Youth Ambassadors to the Creating Change Conference - the largest annual gathering of LGBT activists, organizers, and leaders in the United States. Last year we took three talented, inspired, and dedicated youth activists to Philadelphia. Our Youth Ambassadors learned about intersectionality, racial justice, disability rights, mental health, and a plethora of other social justice topics. They left the conference with a renewed commitment to activism and feeling empowered to create positive change in their own communities, and they have! Last year's Ambassador's have created and given workshops at local youth conferences and summits to educate their community on the topics they learned, and were nominees and awardees of the Queer Youth Leadership Awards for the ongoing work they are committed to.
Our Youth Ambassadors are carefully chosen after a rigorous application and interview process. Youth Ambassadors are local youth activists who have already attended local and state conferences and who have a plan to create change in their communities with the knowledge they gain while attending the Creating Change Conference.
MEET THE 2018 CREATING CHANGE YOUTH AMBASSADORS:
Annie is a senior at Santa Cruz High and a member of the school's Rainbow Alliance. She attends local conferences and meets with students from different schools and she also does environmental volunteering. She wants to alter stereotypical views regarding racial profiling and the LGBTQ+ community as well as improve representation in the media.
Vincent is a queer and nonbinary artist, activist, and student at Delta High School. He has been participating in QSA for over three years. He is also a member of Santa Cruz Museum of Art and History's teen group Subjects to Change's Leadership Team, which organizes teen nights and other projects that provide a safe, empowering place for youth to explore community issues like sexuality, mental health, and identity through an artistic lens. In the future, Vin hopes to continue doing art, helping others, and empowering other young people to do the same.
Sadie is a youth activist from Santa Cruz, California. They attend Alternative Family Education, as well as Cabrillo College part time. Sadie has been a part of The Diversity Center for a long time, and has gotten to be a Triangle Speaker as well as help lead workshops in their community. They hope to help fight prejudice and help educate people to make a better world.
Chevelle is a senior at Delta High School. He has been an active member of his school's QSA for the past three years. He has attended many local queer youth summits and recently co-led a workshop aiming to spread asexuality awareness. He cares very deeply about destroying the stigmas and hatred commonly seen against the LGBTQ+ community.
Traditionally, the QYTF sends a local college student to Creating Change alongside our Youth Ambassadors. This year we included the same rigorous application and interview process that we use for the Youth Ambassadors
MEET THE 2018 YOUNG ADULT AMBASSADOR:
Mason is currently a first year at Cabrillo College majoring in liberal arts. They were part of the “Food What?!” 2017 spring, summer, and fall crew where they educated the community about healthy foods, worked at school and community gardens, grew food for their family, and so much more. They are an involved community member that's very passionate about the LGBT community in the physical labor workforce and providing a safe space for them in workplaces.
To ensure our Youth Ambassadors are safe and have the most meaningful experience possible, we have also carefully chosen chaperones who are local teachers and activists with years of experience working with diverse youth and with chaperoning youth on overnight trips. This year the lead chaperone is Jamie Cutter, M.Ed., a local educator at Delta High School and UCSC who has over a decade of experience working with queer youth and who was a chaperone for the 2017 Youth Ambassadors. Celine Cuneo, M.Ed. will also join us this year as a chaperone!
This year Creating Change takes place in Washington, DC, and we need your help to get our Youth Ambassadors there! This is an amazing opportunity for local youth to experience a national convention in our nation's capital. In addition to attending the conference, we hope to raise enough money to fly out to DC a day early to tour the capital and experience the Smithsonian and National Mall.
The conference takes place in mid January so we have limited time to raise the funds we need. We are fundraising to cover the cost of airfare, room and board, and conference registration fees for our youth ambassadors and chaperones.
In this time of much needed change your contribution will lead to the empowerment of the next generation of leaders.
You can learn more about Creating Change here...
and more about the Queer Youth Task Force here.
All funds will go directly to Stuart Rosenstein, chair of the Queer Youth Task Force since 2000. 100% of the funds raised will be spent on the Creating Change Youth Ambassador program. If you would like to make a direct, tax deductible donation to the QYTF you may do so through our website.
- Pamela Comstock
- Mark Joiner
- Anna Parker
- Dana Kaiser-Davidson
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