Isabella Tejeda, a rising senior at Rosary Academy in Fullerton and a graduate of St. Francis of Assisi in Yorba Linda, was selected to attend a youth gathering at Facebook Headquarter in Menlo Park, CA. Hundreds of young people lead a first-of-its-kind summit to send a strong message to national nonprofit and corporate leaders: We need you to hear us, and we welcome leadership opportunities and real partnership to address the challenges facing our generation.
Sponsored and hosted by America’s Promise Alliance and Facebook Education, the Summit served as the launch pad for a yearlong initiative. Youth leaders will work side-by-side with national nonprofit and business leaders to create new platforms and opportunities for young people to engage and take action in bold ways on a variety of issues—from education, safety, and well-being.
The State of Young People Summit—led by youth leaders aged 12 to 25— served as a crucial moment for youth leaders to shape and drive the conversation around how young people and adults can work together to spark the movements and actions needed to create the environments in which every young person can thrive. The adult attendees included 100 of the nation’s top nonprofit and business leaders who are slated to listen, engage, and make commitments to create authentic leadership opportunities for young people within their organizations.
“At this three-day summit, we were given the opportunity to share our passions and ideas for change with the nation’s top leading business and community leaders. At the end of the conference, we created and kicked off a year-long initiative to put our shared voices and youth leadership in action. The experience of sharing ideas… [with people] across the nation…has been life-changing,” said Tejeda.
Youth leaders used the Summit to outline a vision of partnership and collaboration for the future. The vision will directly shape the commitments business, nonprofit, and foundation leaders will be making to work alongside young people and to create the conditions for young people’s success jointly. For example, the Cleveland Foundation has partnered with MyComCleveland and Twelve Literary Arts to support a delegation of young people from the Cleveland area to attend the Summit. As they return home, all three organizations will work together to identify new ways to meaningfully collaborate with young people to solve problems and drive change.
Rosary Academy Director of Advancement Kristie Rueff O’Campo said, “this is truly a phenomenal opportunity for the next generation of leaders, particularly our young women.”