Children of ABHMS-partnering organization participate in National Day of Social Action
On July 21, children, staff and families of Children’s Defense Fund (CDF) Freedom Schools across the nation participated in a National Day of Social Action to raise awareness about social justice issues. Among them was the CDF Freedom School of Rochester, N.Y.’s Cameron Community Ministries, a partner of American Baptist Home Mission Societies’ Rizpah’s Children ministry. ABHMS provided a grant to Cameron toward expenses for the Freedom School.
“The National Day of Social Action gives scholars a chance to participate in a collective action to encourage scholars to express their desire for change,” says Sarah Green, Cameron Community Ministries’ Youth Program director. “It shows scholars that their voices matter.”
The group of kindergarteners through sixth grade students—aged 6 to 11—designed a banner and participated in planning a march to raise awareness about issues within the juvenile justice system. Four of the scholars wrote speeches, sharing what they have learned about youth justice and what changes they would like to see within the juvenile justice system.
“I had fun planning the march and learning about what youth justice means. We were marching to bring awareness for kids who have not been given a fair chance within the juvenile justice system,” says 10-year-old Luvazia Fultz, a fifth grader. “It is important because we are bringing awareness and protesting for change.”
The march, Green adds, “shows the scholars that they can make a difference and participate in an action bigger than themselves. It opens conversations with the scholars about changes they wish to see in the world and encourages action in the community.”
The children were joined in the march by community members along with Cameron’s staff, families and Teen Center students.