Community involvement is an essential component in youth violence prevention. The MI-YVPC Community Outreach Committee has developed strategies to increase participation and promote its programs to youth and families in the focus neighborhoods.
Some of our core projects place a particular importance on youth engagement. YES actively explores their relationship with their community and environment. Fathers & Sons seeks to strengthen the interpersonal connection within this important relationship.
2014 Future Flint Video Contest
This year, we are hosting the Future Flint video contest. The purpose of this contest is to encourage youth (12 – 18 yrs) to communicate their ideas for improving Flint in a 15 second to 1 minute video. The contest flyer, rules, entry and consent forms are available here. Youth may work individually, or in teams of up to four to create their videos. Completed videos must be uploaded to YouTube between April 7-11. They may also be shared on social network sites such as Facebook or Twitter. Two winners will be chosen based on the videos with the most YouTube views. There will also be two “Judges Choice” winners. Participants under 18 must have parental consent. Each winning team member will receive a $25 gift card. MI-YVPC staff members will host Launch Days during National Youth Violence Prevention Week (April 7-11, 2014), where we will visit youth groups and assist participants to film and upload their videos.
2013 Safe and Healthy Futures Contest
In 2013, we reached out to youth through the Safe and Healthy Futures Contest. The Outreach Committee asked 5th and 6th grade students to submit an original drawing, poem, song, or story about their future. Contestants also answered questions about what their safe and healthy futures look like, what is needed to get them there, and how they view their community. The committee received over 30 entries from two elementary schools and awarded first and second place prizes to participants from each school and grade.
Winning entries can be viewed here and were also featured in the Prevention Research Centers’ 2013 Report, and displayed at the Flint Institute of Arts.
2012 Safe and Healthy Futures Youth Festival
In 2012, over 125 Flint community members and youth attended the Safe and Healthy Futures Youth Festival. Families and youth learned about the MI-YVPC programs and had the opportunity to talk to representatives from MI-YVPC partner organizations. The attendees also enjoyed performances by Flint-based youth groups Raise It Up! Youth Arts & Awareness, the Gamma Delta Kudos and Kappa Leadership League, and Lyrically Elevated from the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Flint. Bang Towns’ Mobile Studio on the Go was also on hand to help the youth participants record a song. Youth at the festival were also invited to be interviewed on camera about their hopes for a health and successful future.