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“I have done things I never thought I was capable of “
by 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”
by 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”
by 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”
by 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!
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!
Our generation has all the potential
Young Activist Leader reflection
By Audrey Connor, Youth Sustainability Council, Community-Minded Enterprises
Thus far into the program, YALP has really helped me understand the context of my thinking as both a semi-organizer and a private citizen. I feel so engaged and impassioned in every discussion, and being able to share my thoughts and opinions freely among like-minded individuals (under the guidance of Shar and Liz) has been a huge gift, especially lately as I figure out what it is I want from my life and experiences.
I am also able to listen to different points of view and have my mind changed often. I really respect my fellow program members, and many of the exercises and discussions we have had have reassured me that our generation has all the potential I tell people it does. I am really, really grateful this program exists.
For more information about PJALS Young Activist Leader Program, visit www.pjals.org/yalp
17-year-old sentenced to life in prison needs support
Please support the release of Yvette Louisell (0805144), who was sentenced as a 17-year-old college student to life without parole. Yvette has been incarcerated now for 24 years. Take a moment to write a short letter to: Judge Michael Moon, Story County District Court, 1315 South B Avenue, Nevada, IA 50201
Since the June Supreme Court decision to strike down laws of Life Without Parole for Juveniles, the Iowa Governor Terry Branstad converted each of the individual cases in Iowa to 60 years. Her case is now in the courts. Read more »
pulling at the threads of our culture of violence
by Liz Moore, PJALS Director
I hope you will join us on Thursday February 7, in the Community Building Lobby, 35 W. Main from 5:30-8pm for our panel discussion of the culture of violence
Like you, my thoughts, heart, and sorrow have been with the families, children, teachers, and entire community of Newtown, CT, in the wake of the devastating tragedy of 28 people, including 20 children, shot and killed in Sandy Hook Elementary School. I have felt the need not to engage with much media coverage of this heartbreaking event, but I do feel the need to share some reflection and thoughts with you here.
This horrible atrocity is part of a pattern of violence in our country. A timeline of most deadly mass shootings from 1989 to the present is a shocking and saddening set of information, showing increasing frequency in more recent years. And at the same time, our federal budget puts 47% of our national budget into past and current Pentagon spending, Read more »
PJALS Young Activist Leaders program
“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.”
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 and concluding in May, 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!).
- Campaigns for Change: Planning and Coordinating
- How to Recruit and Mobilize
- Effective Meetings
- 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!
We 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!
Donate 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!
By 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!
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 »
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 »