Building youth leaders in their communities
Published : Wednesday, March 23, 2016 | 3:19 PM
Woodcraft Rangers hosted a Youth Leadership Summit at Pasadena City College Saturday morning for over 200 youth from around the greater Los Angeles area. This conference style summit provided several breakout small group workshops, led by community leaders, for elementary, middle and high school students to enhance their community projects. The students then presented a service projects to a group of panelist, competing for first place and addressing the needs in their community, in which a winner in each grade level was awarded extra funds to help carry out their mission.
The Youth Leadership Summit focused on engagement and collaborating with the community and tools to help youth leaders communicate with their community. The morning opened up with Councilmember Felipe Fuentes of the 7th District and an NFL-Veteran and Woodcraft Rangers alum, now an ESPN radio co-host and NFL analyst Marcellus Wiley giving the youth words of wisdom and speaking on their experiences.
The winning teams included Haddon Elementary with a community project raising awareness for health and wellness, East Whittier Middle School speaking on creating community gardens and keeping the area clean, and South East High School with an anti-bully campaign. These schools will receive extra funds to help build, create and carry out their projects supported by the Dwight Stuart Youth Foundation.
The conference helped youth learn a wide-range of skills and be able to apply them to real-world experiences. Woodcraft Rangers CEO Chris Johnson said, “Building young leaders in our community is essential to our youth’s future. It was great to see the various leaders give back and give advice that will help shape the youth of tomorrow.”
The group of leaders included Telemundo’s TV anchor and reporter Dunia Elvir, CSQ Publisher David Wurth, California Community Foundation Senior Program Officer of Education Peter Rivera and Los Angeles Sparks Director of Game and Operations Lindsay Rodolico. The students also heard from former high school Woodcraft Rangers alum about their experiences in the program and the impact it took on them to help shape their future.
Woodcraft Rangers is a nonprofit organization that has served above 1.1 million youth of Southern California for over 94 years. Their NVISION programs engage youth with popular activities and cutting edge clubs; inspiring students to learn about the world around them by infusing S.T.E.M. and academic vocabulary.