youth 2016

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Youth At the Conference

Did you think your organization is the only youth group that is focused on food justice & farming?!  Did you know that there are other youth groups around the region, around the country, and around the world, working on improving on food and agricultural issues? 

We invited youth to take an active role in planning and participating the 2016 conference. Youth are a critical part of the movement towards a sustainable and just farm and food system and we want to make sure your voices are included in the conversation.

Friday Youth Track

Youth are invited to attend all conference programming. In addition, this year's conference will feature a Youth Track on Friday, with special sessions developed by and for youth. Youth Track sessions include the following:

Empowering Youth Leaders in the Food Justice Movement
Friday, 9:45-11:00 AM
This interactive session will open up NESAWG’s first ever youth track and showcase the work of youth food systems leaders from around the Northeast. Led by youth from the Massachusetts Avenue Project, FRESH New London, and the Youth Food Justice Network, the session will give youth an opportunity to get to know each other,  learn about a model used to develop youth leaders, and hear stories from youth about how they became leaders in food justice work. 

Presenters: Youth Leaders & Staff, the Youth Food Justice Network, FRESH New London, and the Massachusetts Avenue Project

Mapping Your Food System
Friday, 11:15 AM-12:30 PM
Youth and facilitators from Grow Hartford Youth Program and Summer of Solutions Hartford will lead two activities. Participants will explore their place in the local food system with a movement based mapping game meant to identify key areas for making change! In another activity, participants will be challenged to take on new perspectives through a role playing game.

Presenters: Youth Leaders & Staff, Grow Hartford and Summer of Solutions

Shared Leadership – Youth Leading Youth
Friday, 11:15 AM-12:30 PM
We have found a way to recognize and highlight the voice and perspective of each one of our members, despite the level of experience or confidence they had when starting off the program with us. We want to share our successes and some of our continued struggles to help encourage and promote the use of shared leadership in other programs throughout the North East that focus on Food Justice. Having youth not only involved in, but also leading this movement forward is vital to its success if we are to serve the future generations of our country, regardless of age, race, gender, and economic class.

Presenters: The Windham Youth CORE, Grow Windham

Youth-Driven Solutions – Pedaling Youth for Community Social Change
Friday, 4:15-5:30 PM
Developing youth-driven programming is a powerful way to address issues in your community, as well as adds meaningful capacity to a non-profit or farm. Nevertheless, doing so also brings its fair share of challenges. Join staff from West Virginia State University Extension Service with the Produce Pedalers of Huntington and Charleston, West Virginia, and Southside Community Land Trust in Providence, Rhode Island in scenario-based discussions that challenge you to develop a youth-driven program from scratch. Discussion will be facilitated by the youth staff of Southside Community Land Trust and seek to consider such community issues as: nutrition education, food access, technical farm skills training and youth-police collaboration.

Presenters: Zach Daniels, Valerie Bandell, & Jennifer Totten, Produce Pedalers, West Virginia State University Extension; Maggie Krueger & Youth Leaders; Southside Community Land Trust

Youth Engagement in Evaluation of Community Food Initiatives
Friday, 4:15-5:30 PM
This is a hands-on learning session led by youth leaders and community partners in youth evaluation techniques of the Nuestra Comida collaborative program in Holyoke, MA. What is evaluation? Why do we do it? What are key ingredients for powerful and fun youth-generated evaluation? We’ll set our discussion in the frame of evaluation as cooperative knowledge building, something we all do in our lives to improve the impact of our work and intentions. We will demonstrate fun and practical strategies that empower young people to assess the impact of their work.  We will share tools and offer sample interview questions and end the session with an evaluation of the youth track at the NESAWG conference.

Presenters: Julian Hartmann-Russell, Paulo Freire Social Justice Charter School, Nuestra Comida Project; Neftalí Duran, Nuestras Raíces; Catherine Sands, Fertile Ground & University of Massachusetts–Amherst; Erik Cullen, UMass Amherst Sustainable Food and Farming Program