Last week, SACIV received six international visitors for a Youth and Civic Activism program. The visitors are all leaders in different youth organizations attempting to educate, aid, or engage young people in their communities, countries, and world. Coming from Brazil, Burkina Faso, Lebanon, Malaysia, Nepal, and Paraguay, in San Antonio they were able to learn more about building a grassroots organizations, furthering minority-based advocacy, cultivating youth leadership, encouraging volunteerism, and developing creative interagency partnerships.
The group began with an extensive appointment at Haven for Hope. San Antonio’s nexus of resources for the homeless population allowed our visitors a campus tour, a sojourn to the THRIVE Youth Center, and a wide-ranging conversation about the variety of programs at Haven for Hope. Our visitors were even able to participate in a community service activity with them.
That Monday afternoon, visitors met with YMCA of San Antonio to discuss their work to foster healthy relationships between young people and get them involved in their community. IVLP participants discussed the variety of camps and programming YMCA coordinates to engage young people around the city. They then followed that appointment by meeting with students, teachers, and community partners at the International School of the Americas. Principal Steve Magadance arranged a roundtable discussion of the civic engagement components of the ISA curriculum. Students were able to share their personal experiences inside and outside of the classroom serving their community, becoming global citizens, and celebrating inclusion. The visitors were very impressed by the selflessness the students displayed.
On Tuesday, visitors were treated to a discussion with the MOVE Texas team who elaborated on their efforts to get young people involved in national, state, and local politics. Whether it is issue education, grassroots building, or more fundamentally getting out the vote, MOVE Texas had myriad best practices and strategies to share. Important strategies on a different topic were shared that morning with San Antonio Education Partnerships at cafécollege. Their work to advance every child’s education career through higher education provided a different and beneficial perspective for the visitors.
After having Tuesday afternoon free to see more of the city, the six visitors were invited to SACIV’s Summer Membership Mixer. Joining their IVLP partners from our Global Economic Cooperation group, the delegation was able to make new friends in the San Antonio community from our invited professional resources and members. This event ended a great series of professionally-fulfilling appointments in San Antonio.