This month, you're supporting youth leaders who are organizing for just education and liveable cities.
East Palo Alto youth band H2O, collaborates with revolutionary hip hop artist Freddy Lopez on this music video exploring displacement and home.
Bay Area Members are funding Youth United for Community Action
YUCA trains and mobilizes East Palo Alto youth to fight for the issues that matter most to them and their city. In its lifetime, YUCA has trained over 150 low-income youth of color as core youth organizers and 650 low-income youth of color as members. YUCA is a powerhouse because they rigorously train youth to share their ambitious vision and leverage their social influence in policy spaces
National Members are funding the Youth Organizing Institute
YOI is a youth-led community action group based in Raleigh, North Carolina. They have descended from the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), a youth organization that played a critical role in the Civil Rights movement. YOI helps young people exercise their voice regarding issues they face in the school system. Their current focus is on the school-to-prison pipeline, LGBTQ rights, and the struggles faced by undocumented youth.
May Recommended Actions
Can you commit to taking at least one action this month in support of youth organizing?
Bay Area Actions
Support and follow YUCA
Subscribe to the YUCA newsletter to keep up to date on their calls to action, volunteering opportunities, and news.
Fuel YUCA Campaigns!
Donate supplies or snacks to keep those youth organizers energized! If you have office supplies or food to donate to YUCA headquarters in EPA, email .
Gentrification and Displacement Workshop
SURJ is putting on a workshop on MAY 4TH on gentrification. The workshop will put gentrification and displacement in an historical context and discuss the ways we can challenge gentrification today. As the foremost issue impacted EPA, this is an excellent opportunity to understand your role in fighting this threat to low-income communities of color in the Bay Area.
Coach our future leaders
Become a democracy coach with Generation Citizen. GC inspires young people to be more engaged citizens. You can become a coach to emerging leaders striving to rebuilt our democracy.
Learn how to influence local electoral races
The anti-LGBT state laws in North Carolina that YOI is fighting against show how important state-level politics are. Sister District helps people who live in Blue cities and states strategically support Democratic candidates in tight electoral races at the district level. It's a smart and well-designed program. Sign up to find your nearest Sister District and stay in the loop on races.
Get involved with your local SURJ chapter
If you are White, check out the next general meeting of Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ) if they have a chapter in your city. SURJ is a well-trusted, member-run organization that mobilizes white people for racial justice.
Meet Our May Artist: Breena Nuñez
Breena is a working artist and musician based in Oakland by way of San Bruno, California. She creates short comics and zines that depict her personal experiences of understanding the Central American diaspora while honoring her Guatemalan/Salvadoran roots. She hopes that the power and love of comics will help those find a sense of solidarity with her creations and will be inspired to illustrate their own stories.
She says this about the piece that she created for Blue Heart:
YUCA and YOI reminds me why cultivating a safe and sacred environment for youth is vital to the cultural work that I do as an artist, because they are going to carry the torch of creating cultural shifts in how, what, and who we value. These very important youth organizations are doing that special type of work where young folks of color are understanding the power that they have to bring progressive change to their cities
Meet the Movement Leaders
Tameeka, Executive Director of YUCA
"Housing is an issue we have been working on for about 10 years...Now we happen to be smack dab in the middle of all these tech companies like Facebook and land has become a hot commodity. Back when East Palo Alto was created, no one wanted this land. Black and brown communities were pushed out here, the site of a toxic waste facility and empty lots. And now all of a sudden everybody wants it back. Well, no. You red lined us; you busted everyone out; you said this is where we have to live. We, by will and sheer determination, made it our own. We made it a city. You can't have it back now that we made it something that you want."
Recommended readings and resources for Blue Heart members
YUCA shares their learnings from investigating youth deportation in San Mateo County. The County has the second highest rate of referring youth to ICE, despite no law requiring them to do so. YUCA explore the human stories behind those arrests.
4 min read
Featured in the Mercury News, YUCA ED Tameeka Bennett talks about the complexities of Facebook's $20M investment in affordable housing to combat rising property rates in the South Bay.
A short documentary spotlighting the increasing presence of law enforcement inside schools, and the repercussions that has on the lives of young black and brown children.
Did you know black students are suspended at a rate 3x that of white students? Bust some of the myths you might harbor about school discipline, and what that means for disproportionate use of discipline in U.S. schools.
Share Your Thoughts
What about this month's materials inspired you? What made you uncomfortable? What questions or ideas are you left with?
Share your thoughts, questions, and resources with other Blue Heart members across the country through our private Facebook group.
Blue Heart Impact: Your Dollars at Work
This month, we sent $1,250 to YUCA and YOI!
Each month, at least $10 of your subscription goes to that month's partner organization. For Boost Up, Pollinate, and Amplify Members, $20/mo or more goes to our partners.
By choosing to be a Blue Heart member you are investing in social change not supported by traditional philanthropy. We believe that model is broken. Responding to the root causes of injustice requires building the self-determination of the communities most marginalized by our dominant, extractive economy. And this means funding the small, scrappy, movement-building organizations on the front lines. By voting with your dollar, you believe this type of transformation is possible.
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