What's Happening?

What's Happening?

Summit to Explore Opportunities for Youth Impact

The Power of Youth: Driving Community Change

New mentoring initiative to be launched

More than 250 high school youth and community leaders will come together at the Schenectady County Youth Summit to explore ways for youth to have an impact on their community.  The Summit is scheduled for Wednesday, May 30th at Proctors.  At the Summit, participants will participate in a World Café style forum to identify the best opportunities for advancing a youth-informed agenda for the community.  Those opportunities will be the subject of a prototyping exercise later in the day, where youth will create models for how they would take advantage of each opportunity.  Some of those models will be selected for implementation.

“We want to provide a venue for youth to think about and speak to what they’d like to see happen in their community to make it a better place, “said Robert Carreau, executive director of The Schenectady Foundation, which is organizing the Summit.  “Then, we hope to be able to take the best ideas that come forward and put them to work with and for our youth.”

In 2016, a similar event challenged youths and caring adults and community organizations to respond to the question: What does a community that cares for its youth look like?  The answers were compelling. Among them was the need for more adults to serve as youth mentors and allies.

The Foundation and its community partners took action on what they heard, developing a new partnership called MentorLink, which seeks to increase the number of caring adults involved in the lives of our kids. MentorLink will be managed by Big Brothers Big Sisters, working with ten youth-serving organizations to recruit, train, and place more than 100 new mentors in the first year of the project.  MentorLink, will be rolled out at the Summit on May 30th, and a morning session will focus on the impact of mentoring for both mentees and mentors.

“The key to being a caring community is to first listen, and then to take action and get something done that is responsive to what we hear from our kids,” said Carreau.

A special thanks this year's sponsors! 

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Wednesday, May 30th
at Proctors from 8:30 am to 3 pm

The 2018 Schenectady County Youth Summit will engage high school aged youth and caring adult allies in exploring how we can continue to build a community that cares about its youth.  Conference attendees (about 150 students and 100 adult allies) will participate in a World Café style forum to identify the best opportunities for advancing a youth-informed agenda for the community. 

  • What is most important to youth?
  • What opportunities can we identify and pursue, with and for our youth, to make the community a better place?
  • How can adult allies best engage and support youth?
  • What does it mean to be a mentor, ally or a mentee? How can we increase the number of strong, beneficial connections between youth and adults?
  • What can we do in the next 6-12 months to implement the best ideas that emerge from the Summit?

We will take the most important concepts from the World Cafe, and challenge participants to develop prototypes for youth-driven projects that can be implemented. Large and small-group activities will be used to generate input from youth and adult allies. We will use youth as our experts in charting an action plan to support their success.


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