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Mid-City CAN Blog

Crawford students learn about community advocacy

Monica Martinez

On March 20, several dozen students learned about safety and cross-cultural communication at an afterschool workshop at Crawford High School auditorium.
Youth Empowerment Focus, a leadership organization based at Crawford, organized the event that explored topics like health, safety, culture and education. Mid-City CAN organizers, as well as other experts, talked about some of the Building Healthy Communities Initiative funded efforts to increase safety and other ways residents are working to make a safer, healthier City Heights at the event.
Peter Mekonnen, 16, a junior at Crawford and City Heights resident, said, the event was "basically talking to us about our community and what we can do to help our community."
He said the students at Crawford have to be more culturally sensitive than most.
"At Crawford we have a lot of kids from different cultures," he said.
Ruweda Ali, 17, a junior at Crawford, said he was inspired to work to improve things like statewide education funding.
"Once we were high and now we're at the lowest of the lows," he said. "How did we just go from being the top to the bottom, and what we can do to improve it, to go back up."
Omar Guzman, 16, a junior at Crawford High School and City Heights resident said the event made him want to do more.

"There are many ways that we can help contribute to changing the health in our community," he said.
Monica Martinez, 18, a senior at Crawford and City Heights resident, said the event helped her empathize with other students.
"I learned that some students are afraid of saying what they think, some of the students don't really know how to explain themselves, but most of the students say that they feel unsafe in school or walking out from school as they're going home," she said.
Monica is an intern at Youth Empowerment Focus, and said that students that attended the workshop are better prepared to change City Heights.
"The next step is to try to talk to other students about what they think they should do to change their community," she said.

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