Every summer, SAHARA holds a free summer youth program called Be the Change.
This is a 5-week program in July that is open to all high school students and is an excellent opportunity for teens to delve into social justice work, civic engagement, community building, and student collaborations.
Students identify and discuss their personal and social issues in a culturally sensitive safe space, where they learn the skills to be productive and healthy members of not just the South Asian community but the society at large. .
Through debate, contemplation, and observation, the youth discuss the challenges and dichotomy growing up South Asian in the US. Youth are encouraged to partake in culturally diverse field trips, multimedia project competitions, student collaborations, and so much more. With the help of the educator, they navigate through their views on race, gender, and intersectionality. They discuss existing stereotypes, identity crisis, sexual orientation, biases, and are encouraged to step out of their comfort zone to discuss any other topic that might interest them
Research on youth development shows that youth can overcome obstacles and become successful if these four opportunities are given to them. (Gambone, Connell):
- A Safe Space
- Someone Who Cares
- Chances for them to have choices, be heard, to be able to make decisions and have a sense of belonging.
- Community Engagement
At SAHARA, we provide leadership programs for South Asian youth currently residing in Los Angeles County.
If you or someone you know is in High School and is interested in participating in SAHARA’s Youth Empowerment Summer Program, please contact us.
If you would like to know more about SAHARA or help us continue to provide these services, please give us a call at 562-402-4132 or contact us.
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