Family matters, youth matters
The entire evening was provided to us by community members between the ages of 11 and 18. The Youth Advisory Council performed self directed skits on experiences and effects of bullying and discrimination, a PowerPoint informed the audience of some startling statistics involving youth in America, very talented teens from Lake Stevens displayed visual impact interpretations of the many negative influences in their lives through powerful and moving artwork and incredibly telling photographs, and students from LSHS were on hand to film the event for their upcoming short documentary film on the forum.
“We are very lucky to live in a community that possesses so many caring adults that really want to make the Lake Stevens area a better place for kids to learn, grow and thrive in a safe and welcoming environment; both within and outside of our school walls. Too many times these same concerned adults forget to bring the most important voices to the table when trying to address some of the obstacles that our youth are facing; the voices of the youth themselves,” spokesperson from the Lake Stevens Family Center said. “If we, as a community, are going to expect our children to grow into compassionate and giving adults we need to teach and lead by example. The change we seek can begin by listening to our youth and hearing what they need from us.”
The Youth Forum provided Kids from North Lake and Lake Stevens middle schools, Cavelero Mid High and Lake Stevens High School an opportunity to have that voice.
A courageous panel of twelve young adults candidly answered frank questions to an audience of nearly sixty people; many of who were teens that became engaged in the process and shared their experiences with everyone as well.
Their openness and honesty was enlightening to attending parents, school district staff and community adults giving insight and understanding as to what it is that they would like us as adults to do, listen to, help with or focus on in supporting them to create the change within their culture that would help them succeed and live in a safe environment.
The Lake Stevens Family Center is committed to building a stronger community by providing opportunities and support for youth and adults to be the change within our community that will create safer, healthier, more stable lives for everyone. Their Youth Advisory Council’s message: “Listen to the voices of our youth ---- they need us to hear the things they are saying --- their voices matter!”