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Tasty! Feast of Resistance

blog, members, News, organizing, YLP, YO
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Tasty! Feast of Resistance

SEACA’s Feast of Resistance is back again. This year, we are bringing in tasty foods, such as banh mi, tamales, budaejjigae, and donuts, for our YLP students. We opened up the space to discuss the importance of being connected to people through food culture because our current society has been breaking us all apart in many different ways.

But hold on! The fun continues as we begin introducing our YLP students to more serious topics for discussion, which include U.S. militarism, European colonization, cultural erasure of different ethnic groups, and, most importantly, the significance of solidarity and organizing teamwork.

To students, these may be difficult topics to discuss, but here at SEACA we encourage students to step outside of their comfort zones and to think outside the box. By incorporating different cultural foods, students were able to understand how community organizing today built off of historical context of the past can help us figure out what path we, as a society, should walk on in the future.

Bingo! Seaca Won New YLP Members

YLP
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This year our Youth Organizers (YO) worked creatively to develop new games and activities to welcome the new Youth Leadership Project (YLP) members into the space. After spending a couple weeks preparing for open house, recruiting new members, and doing turnout calls. Our YO’s were finally able to see their hard work pay off at our annual Open House.

YO’s opened up the space by building community through a game of People Bingo where everyone was able to meet new people and learn about each other; some even won prizes! Each year our new members begin building relationship through these fun and creative games that other youth facilitate.

The excitement grew more serious when we transitioned into an activity known as “The Privilege Walk.” As they all stood in a line anticipating the statements that revolved around privileges based on gender, race, ethnicity, class and sexuality to be called out, each took a step forward or backward based on how they identify. This activity allowed them to realize the diversity of privileges and struggles we all come from and how we can use them in community work. Although some youth looked uncomfortable responding to the more sensitive statements, they were willing to open up and be vulnerable in the space. During debrief, new members were able to share out that the activity was interesting and eye-opening. This was just a taster of what SEACA has to offer in YLP. We look forward to continue building with our new youth!

Youth Advocacy Day 2016

organizing
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Most high school students look forward to spending their Spring Break with their friends, hanging out at the beach or the movies.

SEACA youth chose to go to City Hall instead. On Wednesday, March 23rd, SEACA youth spent the day meeting with representatives from the Mayor’s Office and Council Districts 1 and 13.

They shared stories of their love for their communities, their family’s struggle to pay for rent, the need for good jobs, their desire to meaningfully participate in the City decisionmaking process for their communities, and recommendations for how to solve these issues.

Youth Advocacy Day was the culmination of an intensive series of trainings where students developed their own vision of economic and environmental justice for their communities and advocacy strategies to ensure that their vision becomes a reality.

Halloween @ SEACA

YLP
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Halloween can be a fun opportunity to play dress up and be something other than what you are everyday.

However, it wouldn’t be a SEACA Halloween if we didn’t connect it back to the work that we do at SEACA everyday!

During a super special session, we challenged our youth to develop superhero identities to fight discrimination, transphobia, homophobia, patriarchy, racism, and police brutality.  The workshop was an action packed adventure where our students were able to dive right into battling these complex topics.  After splitting into teams, they enthusiastically raced for all the materials, brainstormed ideas, and quickly developed masks, capes, shields, and props with a purpose to tackle their assigned topic.

Each team creatively constructed costumes with functions that included shielding/reflecting police brutality; decorative capes that displayed diversity and words that battle racism; and rainbow mask and attire that reminds people to accept and love everyone no matter how they identify. We concluded our workshop with a superhero runway display where the students were able to describe specific functions of their costumes and how their superhero tackles the issue they were combating.

Although superheroes may be fictional, our youth were really able to bring their creations to life and become real life social justice fighters.

Rallying for a Citywide Solution to Affordable Housing

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This past Monday Oct. 19th, SEACA youth joined a rally in front of LA City Hall as members of ACT-LA, a citywide coalition for equitable development.

ACT-LA members from all over the City braved the rain to bring urgency to the City’s affordable housing crisis, which main experts agree is a key contributor to the mounting homelessness crisis gripping the City and the County.

Separately SEACA has also been a contributor in efforts led by the County to develop a plan on homelessness that is expected to be released in February.  However, without a parallel process to address the affordable housing crisis, we believe that our homelessness crisis will only continue to grow.