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Lift Every Voice Program Fund

$765 of $1,500 goal

Raised by 15 people in 17 months
Created August 13, 2017
My name is Leila Mottley. I am a sophomore at Oakland School for the Arts and am in the process of organizing a workshop at the Oakland Public Library's Main Branch Teen Zone designed to create bonds between formerly incarcerated youth and youth who have never experienced detention.  I am also Oakland's 2017 Vice Youth Poet Laureate.

I am partnered with my mentor/friend Zach Wyner - a writer, educator and incarcerated youth advocate - to launch this program in the fall of 2017. 

In recent years, I have been exposed to and have been heavily influenced by social justice champions like Angela Davis, Erika Huggins, Michelle Alexander and Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor, all of whom speak about the prison industrial complex and its impact on the lives of poor people and people of color. As a young woman of color, I would like to develop a program that is all-inclusive and creates a space of honesty and advocacy for marginalized youth.

I believe that adolescence is a time in which we all need the support of not only adults, but our peers. While in the juvenile justice system, young people often feel voiceless. I hope to establish a program in which adolescents outside of the system are able to be in contact (through weekly meetings, letters, etc.) with people in group homes and detention centers. Youth who have become entangled in the juvenile justice system are habitually underestimated, but I’m confident that if peer advocates utilize our access to resources, and devote our time and energy, we can amplify marginalized voices and help transform this perception.

While I think that programs that put incarcerated and formerly incarcerated youth in mentor relationships with adults have great value, I also think that there is a certain kind of support that can only be provided by people in the same age range. For the benefit of those who have been incarcerated, as well as those who have never been exposed to the juvenile justice system, we must have more contact between adolescents in and out of the system.

Lift Every Voice is a weekly program launching in November 2017 where youth from different backgrounds are given the ability to learn, interact, and advocate for each other through art workshops. In order for the program to thrive, we need donations to provide food, transportation stipends, art supplies, money to pay guest facilitators, and other expenses. The Oakland Public Library has generously offered to host this program on Saturday afternoons in partnership with the Beat Within Workshops.


If you are unable to donate funds, it would also be helpful if you could donate art supplies (camera, drum, keyboard, guitar, ukulele, other instrument, visual art supplies, etc.) Please email us at lifteveryvoiceproject@gmail.com to make a material donation. Additionally, if you know of any youth who would be interested in the program and would benefit from it, please contact us.

Social Media:

Email: lifteveryvoiceproject@gmail.com
Instagram: @lifteveryvoiceproject
Facebook: Lift Every Voice Project
Website: Coming Soon! (funds needed)

The Beat Within
http://www.thebeatwithin.org/ 

Oakland Youth Poet Laureate Program:  http://oaklandlibrary.org/youthpoets
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Update 2
Posted by Leila Mottley
13 months ago
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Almost at $600! Let's keep going. LEV officially starts tomorrow
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Update 1
Posted by Leila Mottley
15 months ago
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Hey guys! Thank you to everyone who has donated!! We are almost 1/3 of the way there! The program starts in a couple weeks (exactly 2 weeks tomorrow) so don't forget to donate. I am so grateful for everyone's support:)
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Read a Previous Update

$765 of $1,500 goal

Raised by 15 people in 17 months
Created August 13, 2017
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ES
$25
Elisa Starble
13 months ago
JB
$100
Janet Bastovan
13 months ago
$50
Shannon Edwards
13 months ago
$50
Zoe Mosko
13 months ago
$50
Anonymous
13 months ago
CB
$50
Connie Bauer
15 months ago
$25
Karin Ward
15 months ago
GW
$100
George and Kathy Wyner
15 months ago
HM
$50
Hedy MacDonald
15 months ago
$35
Margaret Reskin
15 months ago
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