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Mid-City CAN Blog

In my own words: residents develop leadership skills

On Sept. 4 about 20 City Heights community members participated in the first Mid-City CAN City Heights Resident Leadership Academy at its meeting hub. Participants, with the aid of translators who spoke five different languages, learned about what it means to lead a community advocacy effort. They will participate in two-hour sessions with topics, like values and vision and why place matters, every Thursday until Oct. 23.

By Marquise Anderson, teacher at Heartland Coalition's Youth Build Charter High in City Heights

1409MarquiseAnderson
Marquise Anderson

I'm trying to start a youth organizing group at our school, so we said it would be a good opportunity for me to learn new tactics about youth organizing and get more involved with Mid-City CAN.

What we did basically was an assessment of the needs of City Heights, and we assessed what the realities are. 'What are some things that the community needs?' We took into account various voices from different generations, different locations, different nations, languages -- to take everybody's voices into consideration and determine what we need as a community.

I'm a teacher and there are great limitations to teaching. I'm a social studies teacher. I teach people about history ... and economics. But ultimately I think action is what's most important, and what's most needed. Our government has proved that voting alone is not sufficient. We need people to learn about power. Democracy is more than just voting. Democracy is actually taking charge, taking action. You know a government of the people. It is not just voting; it is people actually making things happen. So as a citizen, somebody who works in the community, I think it is important to be a part of that

By Madina Maho, co-chair of the Access to Health Care Momentum Team and City Heights resident

Madina Maho
Madina Maho

I came here because it is an opportunity for me to be open-minded about what's going on and to get some experience and share it with my community, as well as with City Heights. Today we did mostly brainstorming on what is City Heights and what we want it to become like. It is an experience that I will keep, just to learn the professional way of organizing.


By Isabel Hernandez, Food Justice Momentum Team member and City Heights resident

Isabel Hernendez
Isabel Hernandez

Today was to prepare us to be a better leader and speak for the community and learn a little bit more.
We got separated into groups and shared our ideas: What are we expecting to see in our community? We shared our ideas like more jobs, more housing for low-income people, more youth programs and councils for young people.
I think it is going to be interesting. I'm going to be learning from everybody's different ideas. We are all going to share. I'll be more prepared, more confident in myself.

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