On Saturday, March 16, upwards of 100 high school students from around Yolo County will gather at Woodland Community College for a day of civic engagement at the second annual Youth Empowerment Summit, “YES!”. The purpose of “YES!” is to empower and encourage youth to say “YES!” to leadership roles and civic engagement in their local communities.
“We hope to inspire future leaders, increase election participation of our youth and local civic engagement in a respectful and meaningful way to promote positive change,” said Jesse Salinas, the Yolo County Assessor/Clerk-Recorder/Registrar of Voters. The summit educates youth about local government, the election process and encourages civic engagement among local youth.
The inaugural Youth Empowerment Summit took place in March of 2018. Seventy four students were in attendance. At the 2018 summit, youth had the opportunity to speak directly with 22 elected officials (ranging from school board members, city council members and various county officials) about community issues that matter most to them. Students that attended the 2018 “YES!” event were given a pre and post survey. The results were inspirational and are shown below:
“YES!” is a collaboration between the Yolo County Election Office, City of Woodland Public Library’s Teen Advisory Board, Woodland League of Women Voters, Yolo County Office of Education, Early Academic Outreach Program at UC Davis, Yolo County Friday Night Live, Yolo County Library, ASSETs and Woodland Community College.
“We are partners with ‘YES!’ because ‘YES!’ helps students understand that they have a voice and their voice can make a positive difference. Every voice counts,” said Monica Peña-Villegas with the Early Academic Outreach Program at UC Davis.
In addition to the organizations involved in the Youth Empowerment Summit partnership, the event is made possible and supported by the local community by donations from organizations, private donations and donations by local businesses for raffle baskets.Additionally, several community partners and volunteers have offered their time to help facilitate the event.
“YES!” is open to 9th-12th grade students in Yolo County. Students can earn community service hours by attending. Breakfast and lunch will be provided. Students will receive hands on experience in the democratic process and have the ability to interface with local elected officials (28 elected officials will be the 2019 event thus far). For more information on the event and to register please visit:www.yolosaysyes.com. If you would like to donate to this exciting event please visit: Donate to Yolo Countyor contact Katharine Campos at 530-666-8132. Connect with Yolo County ACE – Assessor/Clerk-Recorder/Elections on Facebook Twitter and Instagram to stay informed on “YES!” and future events.]]>