Community 101 allows Youth Against Violence Subcommittee to award grants of $1,250 to youth-led organizations/projects around Multnomah County. Due to recent events locally and nationally, we decided to focus this year’s grants on two important forms of violence: sexual/dating violence and police violence. Our committee was excited to support these causes based on our passions and desire to make change, especially around racial profiling in policing and for survivors of sexual and dating violence. After solidifying our mission statement, we reviewed applications, and YAV began our site visits. During non-covid times, YAVers would go out and meet applicants and interview them and provide them the opportunity to ask questions. This year, we conducted virtual site visits.
As committee members who reviewed the applications, it was inspiring to see different ideas about how to address these major issues in our world. Funding these projects made us feel we were a part of positive change. Arianna, a second-year member of YAV, stated, “For me, I always enjoy learning about different organizations and their motivations and also being able to support youth and their projects that they want to take on.”
YAV was able to fund four youth-led projects:
African Refugee Immigrant Organization - ARIO is hosting a youth-led event focused on helping Black youth and adolescents exposed to community violence with the skills to navigate these violent interactions
Congo Peace Project, a project focused on educating the community on how sexual violence is weaponized to harm communities
I Am M.O.R.E. (Making Ourselves Resilient Everyday), is doing a month-long project that focuses on educating and healing from sexual trauma
Oregon School-Based Health Alliance, who desire to reach marginalized communities by supporting school-based health centers
We specifically chose these organizations because they addressed sexual & dating violence and police violence and we valued their desire to educate and uplift the communities around them through youth-led work.
Overall, this was a really positive experience for our committee. It is encouraging to see all of the youth’s ideas in their efforts in making a change in the world we live in. We are thankful to be able to help youth who often don’t receive funding for projects, especially during this different & difficult year. We look forward to doing more of these types of projects in the future.