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Greetings and salutations from the Young Activist Leaders Program!

Thursday, May 28, 2015 | 3:15pm | One comment.
Young Activist Leaders discussing self care

Young Activist Leaders discussing self care

By Jamie McDaniel

We have been working our hardest to prepare ourselves to be the greatest possible leaders of tomorrow. Last month we worked on reaching out to the community by means of public speaking and building a community power map. A community power map is an extremely important tool to utilize because it one of the most effective ways to analyze who holds the power and how we can sway them to see things are way.

For the month of May, we practiced the art of self-care — which as we all know is often overlooked in our line of work. My personal favorite aspect of this workshop was creating a “word box” in which we put many words that hold significant meaning to us so that in times of trouble, we can draw on one of our words to empower us.

The turnout for YALP has been excellent the past few months and many of us are gearing up and getting ready to attend our Young Activist Leaders Program graduation on June 16th. Let’s hear from some of our graduates:

Bri Gardiner would like all of our supporters to know, “YALP has been an amazing opportunity for me. It has not only connected me with other young activists but it has taught me how to make a difference!” Read more »


“Seeing Our Plans Turn To Action” – Practicum Reflection by Victoria Huckabee

Thursday, May 28, 2015 | 3:15pm | Comment on this

Victoria HuckabeeInterning at PJALS has been an amazing experience for me and I have learned about so many different areas of community organizing and macro level social work. I am grateful for every experience I had at PJALS from participating in police accountability meetings and activities to planning the Mothers and Families for Smart Justice group, and even making hundreds of event reminder phone calls. Interning at PJALS has taught me community organizing, leadership skills, and formed my professional identity. I feel confident and satisfied in the work I have done and in the work I will continue to do with the skills I learned at PJALS.

Looking back on the year I remember how little I knew about community organizing at the first event I was a part of, which was the Smart Justice Community Symposium. I remember feeling a little useless and somewhat in the way because I had so many questions and wasn’t really sure what I was doing. As the year progressed and I felt more confident in my abilities I began to own my projects and take pride in my work. When I compare my symposium experience to our most recent event, which was the auction, I am really able to see how much I changed and grew over the course of my internship. The auction was a very different experience for me than the symposium was. At the auction, I felt confident in the work I was doing, took charge of my projects, and stepped up to help out wherever I was needed. I also noticed a difference due to the relationships I built with members and volunteers and it feels great to be a valuable member of the team. Read more »


“A Sense of Needing to Contribute” – Practicum Reflection by Teresa Kinder

Thursday, May 28, 2015 | 3:15pm | Comment on this

Teresa KinderInterning at PJALS has provided me with a unique opportunity to learn mezzo and macro level social work practice. I learned what advancing social change really means and what working for a better tomorrow looks like. Students in my social work cohort question whether they are really making a difference. At PJALS I have never questioned if my work is making a difference. Being an intern has shown me my own faults and areas for improvement but also how to make a difference in the community.

At the start of the year I started at another internship. I remember hearing fellow interns Jamie and Victoria talk about all the work they were doing at PJALS and feeling a sense of needing to contribute to this work.

Starting my internship at PJALS, one of the first things I was a part of was a demonstration about the Department of Justice report on torture tactics employed by the Bush administration and developed at Fairchild Air Force Base. This small demonstration was my first look into the injustices perpetrated in our country and one action we can take to counter injustice. Read more »


“My Journey as a Warrior of Social Justice” – Practicum Reflection by Jamie McDaniel

Thursday, May 28, 2015 | 3:15pm | Comment on this

Jamie McDanielAs my year as an intern here at PJALS comes to a close, I have truly begun to notice the impact my time here has made on me as a person and how much of this practice I have soaked up like a little social-justice sponge.

An example of this is in my final policy class at school, now my fellow students seek me out and want to work with me on projects or ask my advice on assignments and perspectives. It is extremely empowering to know that people can turn to me for help and assistance on issues that are not taught enough in our Bachelor’s of Social Work program. I have enjoyed being able to share what I have learned here with everyone around me and it has truly been a unique and enlightening experience.

My fondest memories at PJALS are mostly made up of our rallies and protests. It’s the time where we put all the taxing office work into action, taking to the streets with a purpose. I can remember my first protest for Condoleezza Rice’s visit Spokane and how nervous and excited I was to finally get to be part of something great and bigger than myself. There are not any words to describe how it felt to shout chants into the bullhorn for the very first time. Read more »


Wisdom and Wishes from the Action Conference Youth Panel

Thursday, May 28, 2015 | 2:14pm | Comment on this
2015 Action Conference Youth Panel

Emanuel Flores, Jaclyn Arger, Charlie Johansen, and Judith LeBlanc at the 2015 Peace & Economic Justice Action Conference

At our Action Conference in March, PJALS Steering Committee member and YALP grad Taylor Weech moderated a panel with three young activists: Charlie Johansen is a Cheney High School student who graduated from our Young Activist Leaders Program last year. Jaclyn Acher is an EWU student. Emanuel Flores is a member of Young Emerging Labor Leaders. Here are some excerpts from the conversation from my notes!  – Liz

What is your vision you’re working toward?
Equity and strong communities. ~ Charlie Johansen.
Cultural awareness and not living in ideological monoculture – Jaclyn Archer.
Everyone should be able to go to work and be paid fairly and not bullied – Emanuel Flores.

What do you need from older activists? What do you not need?
I need your wisdom …not your cynicism. ~ Charlie.
I need scaffolding and practical support, help with organizing. I don’t need to be told what my generation needs. ~ Jaclyn.
I need understanding. I’m young and I have an opinion. Give me the opportunity to learn. ~ Manny

What gives you hope? What is most disheartening to you?
Community is essential. The most disheartening thing is futility and the systems that are in place and the disproportionate amount of power some people have. – Charlie
When regular folks have that aha moment and realize if they don’t get active, nothing good is going to happen. The most demobilizing thing is cynicism. Can’t stand it. — Judith
What I find disempowering is calls to revolution without practical follow-up. The empowering thing is: Together we will continue. We are not alone, and the persistence is continuing. — Jaclyn
The most disheartening thing for me is being told, “You failed.” What helps me is addressing my elders and getting a rub on the back. Mistakes are how you learn. — Manny Read more »


Year of Youth!

Monday, Jun 2, 2014 | 1:13pm | Comment on this

PJALS members like you supported youth as leaders for justice in three ways this year!

Young Activist Leaders 2013-2014Congrats to the graduating YALPistas of 2014! Our Young Activist Leaders Program offers passionate youth leaders ways to strengthen their own youth-led groups.  Hear from YALPistas Vitamin J, Amy, and Sevan!

We cultivate new community organizers via practicum placements from the EWU School of Social Work. Check out Dom’s & Jeremiah’s reflections in their own words.

Teaching as the first-ever EWU Activist in Residence, PJALS’ Liz Moore reached over 140 students with nonviolence & social justice. Pics here!

 


Dom Felix: “Impossible to Leave”

Monday, Jun 2, 2014 | 1:13pm | Comment on this

Dom FelixI have truly enjoyed my time as a PJALS Intern. I cannot imagine having done my practicum anywhere else. When other students in my cohort share their experience at their practicum sites I am surprised by stories where students feel as though their work doesn’t matter.  I hear about endless intakes, “Name and date of birth please.” I have never felt like my work at PJALS didn’t matter. Often I felt like I was not the most qualified person for the job, but by working on campaigns that really matter to me I think I was able to be effective.

When I started in the fall the Spokane Police Accountability and Reform Coalition was working feverishly to empower the Office of Police Ombudsman. Sadly a new contract was approved that left Proposition 1 voters wanting more. On a more positive note Spokane has a much better Internal Affairs process in place now. Body cameras that should make excessive force complaints easier to verify have been approved. Some goals were not met, but the system is better now than it was before. I learned that changing policy requires a long attention span. Read more »


Marching for Immigration Reform

Monday, Jun 2, 2014 | 12:12pm | Comment on this

immigration reform march May 12014

Jeremiah Manes and YALP alum Molly Ftizpatrick carry the PJALS banner at the May 1 2014 march for Immigration Reform. PJALS Organizer Shar Lichty and member Mark Hamlin offered a Peacekeeper training for MEChA de EWU members who organized the event.

PJALS Director Liz Moore and little Duncan

PJALS Director Liz Moore and little Duncan say: Immigration Reform Now!

 


Jeremiah Manes: “Creating the Culture We Want to See”

Monday, Jun 2, 2014 | 12:12pm | One comment.

Jeremiah with signAs a social work student at Eastern Washington University, I joined PJALS to gain the field experience that supplements classroom learning. With elementary awareness of privilege, oppression and social injustice, but without knowledge of the activist skill-set used to counter this oppression, I came to PJALS to develop these skills.

My time here was spent on our Palestine-Israel Human Rights Committee, Young Activist Leaders Program, and planning and promoting community events such as our annual Action Conference, Soiree fundraiser and Palestine Film Festival. These experiences offered valuable opportunities for my future social work path, wherever that may be. Read more »


Activist in Residence: PJALS reaching EWU students on campus

Monday, Jun 2, 2014 | 12:12pm | 2 comments

Activist in Residence collage

Over 200 students learned about PJALS, social justice campaigns, being allies to each other, nonviolence, and more through workshops & class presentations by PJALS director Liz Moore.

Participants who completed all 4 Activist in Residence workshops received certificates in Social Justice Leadership.


Young Activist Leaders: Building Our Boldness

Friday, Feb 28, 2014 | 10:22pm | Comment on this

Jeremiah Manesby Jeremiah Manes

The Young Activist Leaders Program benefits those of us involved on so many levels. As a member of this program I can say that learning in connection with a small and committed group of young people provides an environment well suited to build our boldness, sense of camaraderie, and desire to create change.

The Young Activist Leaders Program effectively provides skills for activism in workshops and context for necessity of action during retreats. Young people who may feel disenfranchised from the problems they face will gain a more in-depth understanding of oppression and will be able to personalize an effective plan of action on an issue of importance.

Specifically, we have learned successful speaking skills for motivating people to action, facilitating meetings, and building campaigns.  We’ve also learned community-specific ways to mobilize allies in Spokane. And always we are provided with written resources that will be valuable in future campaign planning.

I encourage any young person who is feeling immobilized, in a rut or lacking resources, to join next year’s program and be a part of the energizing group process at YALP!

 


Inspiration & Impact in Olympia: Lobby Day!

Friday, Feb 28, 2014 | 10:22pm | 3 comments

Bobby Kirlby Bobby Kirl

On January 20th, I and members from the 6th Legislative District participated, alongside PJALS and Washington CAN members from many Eastern Washington Legislative Districts, in an exciting and highly effective lobby day in Olympia. Our PJALS delegation of 16 people was our largest to date! The atmosphere and mood of the delegation was more than this aspiring activist could have hoped for right from the start.

2014 MLK Lobby Day - PJALS delegation in march to capitolMy first lobby day began with an inspirational rally. Several highly motivated organizers and activists shared heart-felt personal stories of their struggles and triumphs on important legislative issues like the Washington DREAM act–which has since been signed into law!– as well as increasing access to dental care, paid sick days for all workers and health care reform. The rally left the congregation with no doubt of the importance of the agenda. Shortly after that inspiration the entire group, nearly 200 strong, took to the streets for a multi-block march from the Capitol Theater all the way to the steps of the State Capital building. Read more »


Welcome new intern Jeremiah Manes!

Monday, Nov 25, 2013 | 11:11am | One comment.

Jeremiah Manes

Jeremiah Manes is a 24 year old senior in the EWU Social Work program. He is from Coeur d’Alene and recently transferred from Lewis and Clark State and moved to Spokane. He pursued social work because the values associated with it resonated strongly with him. He joined PJALS hoping to build skills in the area of political activism where he has no previous experience

Jeremiah is involved in the Young Activist Leaders Program (YALP), the Peace and Justice Action Committee (PJAC) and the Palestine-Israel Human Rights Committee (PIHRC). Read more »


Welcome new intern Dom Felix!

Monday, Nov 25, 2013 | 11:11am | Comment on this

Dom FelixDom Felix joined PJALS this year as part of an internship through Eastern Washington University’s Social Work program. Dom has been a long-time resident of the Spokane area who recently chose to pursue higher education in hopes of becoming a chemical dependency counselor. Now as a senior in the program, Dom has come to the decision that working on systemic social change would be a more constructive use of his social work career. This realization lead to Dom choosing PJALS as an internship placement when he became aware of the organization during a lobby day trip to Olympia last year. Read more »


Bobby Kirl joins our team in January!

Monday, Nov 25, 2013 | 11:11am | Comment on this

Bobby Kirl is a Master’s level social work student at Eastern Washington University and has chosen to spend his practicum hours with us. Bobby was first introduced to the work of PJALS during a university course on human rights and was later able to become involved when his affiliation with the local Vets for Peace chapter led to an opportunity to play music at our PJALS membership meeting.  Read more »


Bullets and Bookbags

Thursday, Oct 31, 2013 | 1:13pm | Comment on this

Originally published by the Inlander (http://www.inlander.com/spokane/bullets-and-bookbags/Content?oid=2219029)

by Daniel Walters

The production assistant from ABC’s 20/20 team thought he’d found a story in Coeur d’Alene. Supposedly, school district teachers there had begun carrying concealed handguns to protect against school shooters.

It was only when he called the district that he learned he’d been duped. The story was completely made up — his source turned out to be a satirical online newspaper similar to The Onion. But the truth wasn’t so far off. After the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary last December, two different camps demanded solutions. Gun control advocates said it was finally time for new legislation to rein in the availability and power of assault weapons. The NRA called for schools to add more armed personnel, reasoning that only a “good guy with a gun” could stop a “bad guy with a gun.”

As gun control attempts fizzled nationwide, many schools have pursued the NRA’s option. The Coeur d’Alene school district added additional police officers in the schools and spent $3,390 to install six gun safes in school offices, giving officers powerful rifles that can shoot accurately down long hallways. Spokane Public Schools plans to arm its security officers for the first time. And in Sandpoint, a school board member’s proposal to use armed volunteers — or even gun-toting teachers — has triggered contentious school board meetings and a recall campaign..

Read more at the Inlander >>


Engaging students for social justice! PJALS Director will be first Activist-in-Residence at EWU

Tuesday, Sep 3, 2013 | 12:12pm | Comment on this

PJALS is excited to announce that director Liz Moore will serve as the first Activist-in-Residence at EWU this winter. This is a wonderful opportunity to further the work we’ve begun through our Young Activist Leaders Program and our community organizing internships. Read more »


Marching for Immigration Reform

Friday, Jun 21, 2013 | 10:10am | Comment on this

Immigration March 2013

By Lucy Vazquez, PJALS intern

The streets of Downtown Spokane echoed with a powerful “Sí Se Puede” (yes we can) on May 1st as approximately 150 Mechistas, PJALS folks, students, and other community members marched on the streets in support of a just and humane Comprehensive Immigration Reform that will create a pathway to citizenship for the estimated 11.2 million undocumented people currently living in the United States. Read more »


“I have done things I never thought I was capable of “

Friday, Jun 21, 2013 | 10:10am | Comment on this

Michelle Littleby Michelle Little

When I first chose to do my internship with PJALS, I was a bit wary of how well I could function as a community organizer. I can’t even keep my house organized, so the thought of organizing a whole community was a bit intimidating. However, looking back over the experience I have had with PJALS it was probably one of the best decisions I have ever made. Read more »


“I was part of a monumental victory”

Friday, Jun 21, 2013 | 10:10am | Comment on this

Justin Fillaby Justin Filla

These past nine months at PJALS has been a great experience. I have had the privilege of sitting on the Marriage Equality Committee as well as the Palestine and Israel Human Rights Committee (PIHRC). From sitting on these committees I had the opportunity to work with some amazing individuals who have an abundance of knowledge and passion for the issues we worked on. Read more »


“I discovered my passion”

Thursday, Jun 20, 2013 | 5:17pm | Comment on this

Lucy Vazquezby Lucy Vazquez

The past nine months at PJALS have been very rewarding. There were many times I doubted my abilities in community organizing and often thought that perhaps community organizing wasn’t for me. During my practicum experience I didn’t get the intern-to-client work experience that my fellow classmates did, however I do understand the importance of lobbying and the importance of being politically involved. I would like to continue working around changing policy for social justice. One of my professors mentioned to us, “social workers are the lobbyists of the poor.” At first I didn’t understand her statement but now after seeing all the work that PJALS does for our community, I get it. Read more »


“I have the values and drive to influence change”

Thursday, Jun 20, 2013 | 5:17pm | Comment on this

Josh Neilby Joshua Neil

I started the school year off excited to be able to gain knowledge and experience from PJALS.  Now I have a little over a week left of my undergraduate career and I’m wondering where the time went!  My time as an intern at PJALS has been so enriching.  I have learned so much about the issues I’ve worked on, and at the same time I’ve learned more about myself.  The thing I will remember most about my practicum experience is the people.  Read more »


Young Leaders graduate–tomorrow, the world!

Thursday, Jun 20, 2013 | 5:17pm | Comment on this

YALP class of 2013

 

Congratulations to the Young Activist Leaders Program class of 2013!  Michelle Little, Michael Tooley, Lucy Vazquez, Justin Filla, Taylor Weech, Josh Neil, and Audrey Connor (not pictured).

Thank you for being part of our program! Love and best wishes to each of you!


Pull the Pentagon Pork: Protect our Priorities, Protect Families

Wednesday, Mar 6, 2013 | 1:13pm | Comment on this

Pull the Pentagon PorkUpdate: Check out our photo petition on the National Day of Action to Pull the Pentagon Pork here!

By Lucy Vazquez

On Tuesday February 19th PJALS members met with John Culton, the Eastern Washington Director for Senator Patty Murray as our second mobilization, following up on our December action, where we delivered over 1,100 signatures of individuals and 18 different organizations that have signed on as part of PJALS’ Bring Our Billions Home Campaign. As the fight over the budget continues and more cuts to social programs are on the chopping block, PJALS decided to make a stance and urge Senator Murray to protect our communities and fight to reduce wasteful Pentagon spending.

Sitting in Senator Murray’s Eastern Washington Director John Culton’s office with seven PJALS members–veterans, students, farmers, mothers and fathers, and other everyday people–and listening to their stories made me realize this is not about numbers, it’s about impacting real people and communities. Read more »


Time to Put People First

Friday, Feb 8, 2013 | 2:14pm | 2 comments

 By Michelle Little, Young Activist Leader and PJALS Intern

Being a single mother of three young children, I depend on many programs to care for my family while I am attending college, including Medicaid, food stamps, child care assistance and the Washington State Need Grant for higher education. Continuing cuts to these programs will devastate families such as my own, and many other families who are struggling to stay afloat.

On Martin Luther King Jr. Day I had the privilege of speaking at the rally on the capitol steps with 300 people at Washington Community Action Network’s Racial Justice Rally in Olympia. I went with a delegation from the Peace and Justice Action League including my fellow intern Justin Filla. This was the first time I had ever spoken in front of a crowd, and although it was very scary it was also very empowering to be able to tell my story and have the support of so many people who feel the same way I do.


Read more »


Welcome Michelle Little

Tuesday, Oct 30, 2012 | 9:21pm | Comment on this
Michelle Little

Michelle Little, Young Activist Leader and PJALS intern, with her kids

Michelle Little grew up in Omak, WA, and is the mother of three children, ages 7, 4, and 2. Michelle decided to get a degree in social work so she can change people’s views on social workers, due to her own previous negative experiences with social workers.

At first, she was interested in working in corrections or chemical dependency. After learning about macro-level social work in one of her classes, Michelle realized that she wanted to make a bigger difference and work on a larger scale. The major turning point for her was when she went to Olympia to lobby for healthcare. Read more »


Welcome Josh Neil

Tuesday, Oct 30, 2012 | 9:21pm | Comment on this
Josh Neil

Josh Neil, Young Activist Leader and PJALS intern

Josh Neil, from Whidbey Island, WA, is very active on EWU’s campus, where he helps the Pride Center Coordinator with various presentations about the LGBT community and how to become an ally.

Josh got very interested in learning more about PJALS after talking with one of the interns from last year. He then saw the organization’s work as something that he saw himself doing in the future. He states, “I’m looking forward to becoming more involved in the political process,” so he can become a more informed citizen.

He describes his most memorable moment at PJALS thus far, as doing phone banking for Referendum 74. Read more »


Welcome Lucy Vazquez

Tuesday, Oct 30, 2012 | 9:21pm | Comment on this
Lucy Vazquez

Lucy Vazquez, Young Activist Leader and PJALS intern

Lucy Vazquez, from Wenatchee, WA, became interested in social work because she liked the case management work she saw her mother doing in the community. Lucy is also working on a minor in Chicano/Latino studies.

Lucy has been active in MEChA, NASA (Native American Student Association), One America and other social justice groups and she’s learned leadership and communication skills. She has a passion for social change, is open-minded, and wants to help other people. Read more »


Welcome Justin Filla

Tuesday, Oct 30, 2012 | 9:21pm | Comment on this
Justin Filla

Justin Filla, Young Activist Leader and PJALS intern

Justin Filla is from Cowiche, a small rural community outside of Yakima, WA. He was originally majoring in Criminal Justice, but after learning more about systemic issues that contributed to the delinquency of minors, he realized that he would rather be on the other side of the problem. Rather than putting people in jail he wanted to help them in other ways. He then decided the Social Work program would be a good fit. He is still considering finishing his degree in Criminal Justice, but would like to focus on his current program. For the last three years, Justin has been involved with ASEWU, the Associated Students of Eastern Washington University, and is currently the elected Student Services Representative. Read more »


PJALS Young Activist Leaders program

Wednesday, Sep 5, 2012 | 2:14pm | Comment on this

Download our flier and info sheet, or click here for the easy sign-up!

YALP 2011
“Not only did this program give me numerous, explicitly useful tools for my activism, it refueled my spirit every month and encouraged me immensely to stay involved and active. I was treated like my work really mattered.”

“This program has been incredibly helpful and enjoyable. It helps young activists realize and utilize their own power and promotes their autonomy as leaders and organizers.”

“The Young Activist Leaders program is an amazing experience for all levels of personal experience. It is a wonderful opportunity for current leaders to share their knowledge with those who seek it and to ensure there are future leaders to push boundaries, ask questions, and seek justice.”

contribute

Your support helps us provide skill-building workshops, binders and materials,  dedicated staff time, healthy food, and stipends for those who complete the commitment. Thank you! It’s easy at www.pjals.org/contribute.

 

Check out our coverage on KYRS:

  • PJALS Young Activist Leaders Speak Out: Hear the voices of Young Activist Leaders honored by Peace and Justice Action League of Spokane. Molly Fitzpatrick talks about her work with Angry Feminists and Eagle Pride. Taylor Malone is an organizer of Spokane’s Slut Walk, pushing back against victim-blaming. Shea Gorman led Gay Straight Alliance work at East Valley High School. And PJALS intern Alyssa Henderson learned more about fighting poverty and opposition to the death penalty, while pursuing her social work degree. June 6 2012.
  • Liz Moore On PJALS Young Activist Leaders: Liz Moore from Peace & Justice Action League of Spokane talks about the celebration at the Community Building for PJALS Young Activist Leaders. PJALS is now accepting applications for the coming year. June 5 2012.

 And, read what more YALP grads have to say about their experience.

In our Young Activist Leaders program, young people:

  • Explore social justice with other Spokane-area young people who value equality, human rights, economic justice, and peace!
  • Sharpen your skills to lead and make change!
  • Help make your group or club better, faster, stronger!

Our 10-month leadership development program is right for young people already active in or leading student groups, faith communities, and community groups as well as for folks new to activism. It’s a great opportunity to help new leaders grow or to create student projects! Starting in October 2012 and concluding in May 2013, every month participants will

  • attend a skill-building educational workshop (see topic list below).
  • volunteer with a group of their choice (including PJALS of course!).

Workshop Topics:

  • Campaigns for Change: Planning and Coordinating
  • How to Recruit and Mobilize
  • Effective Meetings
  • Fundraising
  • Event Planning
  • Generating Media Coverage
  • Public Speaking
  • Nonviolence and Militarism
  • Identity, Privilege, and Oppression
  • LGBT Equality and Liberation
  • Moving Racial Justice Campaigns
  • Corporate Power: An Economic Reality Check
  • Negotiating with People in Power
  • …and more!

YALP bullhorn logo and slogansWe provide a gathering place for young people to ask questions, to educate each other, and to explore social justice work together. Our hands-on program helps grow a vibrant network of young people committed to social justice. In addition to our monthly two-hour workshops, a Saturday retreat in the fall and in the spring mean we can cover lots of ground, provide a full toolbox of tools–not to mention a binder of resources–and really accelerate the development so that your group can make the changes you want to see… better, faster, stronger! 

Help us connect with young activists!
You can connect us with a group at a high school, college, your faith community, or elsewhere, or send a young leader from your group to participate in the program. Download our flier and info sheet, check out the easy sign-up, and more!

Support Young LeadersDonate to support youth leadership! Your donation at any level will make a difference! Costs will include dedicated staff time, materials, food, and, if we can, bus passes and stipends for those who complete the commitment. Your donation of $50, $100, or any amount will help fund this exciting program! You can sponsor a youth leader at $1000 or co-sponsor at $500, or sponsor a workshop at $300. It’s easy at www.pjals.org/contribute.


Young Activist Leaders graduate!

Thursday, Jun 28, 2012 | 4:16pm | Comment on this

By Liz Moore

Liz Moore

Our Young Activist Leaders program has graduated its first class! This, as you know, is PJALS’ re-launched youth leadership development program, which introduced me to social justice work when I was a high school student. Because of passionate support from members like you, we re-launched this program last fall to build the skills and support the leadership of wonderful young people. Read more »


Our Work for Economic Justice – A PJALS Success Story!

Thursday, Jun 28, 2012 | 2:14pm | Comment on this

by Amanda Hunt, BSW

Since September, I have had the pleasure of working with the Peace and Economic Justice Committee. In this committee, we set our 2012 legislative priorities which included fighting to raise revenue in the state by closing corporate tax loopholes and rejecting cuts that will disproportionately affect low-income children, families, and people of color. Read more »


Regina’s Reflection

Thursday, Jun 28, 2012 | 2:14pm | Comment on this

by Regina Steele, BSW

The past nine months at PJALS have been an unforgettable journey with new friendships and skills built. I truly have engaged individuals and local communities in building a just and nonviolent world. I want to thank PJALS for giving me the opportunity to serve as an intern during my practicum. Read more »


Young Activist report: I can make a genuine difference in my community

Wednesday, Jan 25, 2012 | 10:22pm | Comment on this

By Molly Fitzpatrick, EWU Scary Feminists and Eagle Pride

The PJALS Young Activist Leadership Program has been an absolutely integral part this year in shaping me as an activist. Since I was sixteen activism has essentially been a “learn as you go” process for me, peppered with a few conferences and workshops here and there. I have pretty much always relied on the kindness and patience of experienced organizers to teach me their tricks and help me along. This program is basically a concentrated version of all of those tricks, and then multiplied by ten. I have learned so much and even if it ended right now I would have at least twice as many resources that I had when I started. Read more »


Young Activist report: a much bolder feeling of confidence

Wednesday, Jan 25, 2012 | 10:22pm | Comment on this

By Jessica Jahn, SFCC Alliance

Only just recently have I embraced the lifestyle that is activism and feminism.  I am so thankful for both. If I had not met Molly Fitzpatrick and in turn been introduced to the PJALS Young Activist Leadership Program, I fear I may still be living in blissful ignorance. Molly has helped open my eyes and PJALS has taught me things I never thought I would have the opportunity to learn! I know I’ve always had a rebellious and questioning attitude towards life, but I never had a purpose. Now I can say I have quite a few actually, all thanks to everything Liz and Shar have laid down for us. Read more »


Occupy the Capitol

Wednesday, Jan 25, 2012 | 10:22pm | Comment on this

By Amanda Hunt

PJALS and Washington Community Action Network worked together to get 20 Spokane residents to Olympia to Occupy the Capitol at the end of  November  We went to speak to our legislators and to encourage legislators to take a “balanced approach” to the budget and to raise revenue by closing corporate tax loopholes.

We met with Senate Majority leader Lisa Brown and Representative Andy Billig, who were welcoming and excited we were there. We also met with 6th District Representative Kevin Parker. When asked to raise revenue and not cut programs, he asked us “Why are you doing this to yourselves? Why don’t you request to send the Department of Ecology to the voters instead?” Read more »


Facing Race: How Budget Cuts Are Increasing Racial Disparities

Wednesday, Jan 25, 2012 | 10:22pm | One comment.

Washington’s communities of color and low-income communities have faced unequal pain in this recession. High levels of unemployment, home foreclosure, and racial inequities in health, education and criminal justice continue to devastate communities of color. By 2030, one in every three Washington residents will be a person of color.

Everyone deserves the opportunity to succeed. Washington’s budget decisions can either echo this, or make matters worse.

The report Facing Race: How Budget Cuts Are Increasing Racial Disparities highlights how the cuts made to the 2011-2013 biennial budget disproportionately affect communities of color in Washington State and worsen existing racial disparities. Read more »


Students speak out for revenue at EWU legislative panel

Wednesday, Jan 25, 2012 | 10:22pm | Comment on this

By Alyssa Henderson

In November, we new interns at PJALS successfully held a legislative panel on EWU’s Cheney campus. The panel was sponsored by PJAL-EWU (the new club on Eastern’s campus that we kicked off in September) and the Associated Students of Eastern Washington University. Focusing primarily on proposed budget cuts to higher education, the panel allowed students and community members the opportunity to speak directly to their legislators, addressing their concerns. Representative Susan Fagan of the 9th District, Senator Majority Leader Lisa Brown of the 3rd district, Senator Michael Baumgartner of the 6th district, and Representative John Ahern also of the 6th district sent their policy advisors.

Expecting only a turn-out of around 40 people, we were delighted when nearly all seats were filled and 100 people had partaken. Read more »