Applications are now open for the Empower Fellowship.
The Empower Fellowship is rooted in the foundation of social justice work; that they must take an active role in their growth.
The Youth Activist – Youth Allies (YA-YA) Network provides training and leadership experience to the next generation of activists in the movement for social and economic justice. YA-YA is a youth-driven, citywide, anti-racist, anti-sexist organization and allies with the LGBTQ+ community. They provide free (and often with stipend) core training to young activists.
Empower focuses on identity/leadership development, as well as building their knowledge and practice in solidarity work. They acknowledge in the work they do to address and deconstruct their biases, personal narratives, and their understandings of power, privilege, and oppression, that they must learn not only how to make space for themselves and for their communities, but understand their participation in the systems that oppress those that endure what they do not. They acknowledge the power in advocating for themselves while also recognizing their individual impact and value within their communities and the importance of their active advocacy and solidarity for those outside their communities. They do this all, understanding that this growth rests beyond their comfort zones.
Empower focuses on identity development, self-esteem, confidence building, and leadership training. Throughout the Spring, Empower fellows will complete an intensive program that focuses on the following:
- Self Awareness & Identity Development
- Social Justice & Unlearning
- Action & Allyship
- Action Project. During the Action Project stage, young folks will get the opportunity to engage in an advocacy project of their choice.
Who Joins the Empower Fellowship?
- This Empower Fellowship is for those who are interested in beginning their journeys of unlearning internalized messages about themselves and their communities, and it is for those interested in expanding their knowledge, understanding, and advocacy of groups outside their communities and identities. It is for those interested in breaking down their barriers and becoming leaders. Those that join the Empower Fellowship are open-minded, critical and self-reflective, curious, community-orientated and interested in social justice, excited to use what they learn about themselves and about others to begin organizing, and willing to push themselves into what they call their “learning zones”, even if it means becoming uncomfortable and engaging with concepts you have never engaged with before. Ultimately, having a background in social justice and organizing is not the most important thing, your willingness to learn and advocate for others is.
- The opportunity is currently only available to young folks between the ages of 15-19 living in the U.S.
For more information, visit https://www.yayanetwork.org/empower