Thanks For Your Donations On #GiveMiamiDay!
Integrated Voter Engagement
In April, Power U launched an integrated voter engagement (IVE) program to engage the greater Miami community. Particularly on how the community understands and connects with the issues we’re working on this upcoming year. As part of this process, we’re looking to grow our community support. We believe in order to win School Board elections and policies that would benefit our youth and schools, we need to have community investment. With community support we can hold MDCPS Superintendent Alberto Carvalho accountable for promises he has made around implementation of restorative justice and ending school push out.
To date, we’ve canvassed over 3,500 registered voters in Miami School Board District 2 and have collected over 2,285 pledge cards — and counting! Many of our canvassers have been our youth members! This has been an opportunity for their leadership to be shared within the very communities they live in. Our IVE program is set to continue in the New Year!
Can’t Stop! Won’t Stop!
This year Power U Center of Social Change was proud to partner with the Dignity in Schools Campaign for the 8th Annual National Week of Action Against Schools Pushout! This year’s theme was, “Education is a Human Right! We Will Not Give Up the Fight!”This year we hosted an event, “Can’t Stop! Won’t Stop!” During the event, we featured a short film about our organizing history in Miami over the last 15 years. Power U youth members Ajani Valcourt and Thomas Bryant talked about the work we’re trying to move in Miami and held a Q&A where the community could ask questions.
After the Q&A, Power U youth and guests ate dinner together and discussed what is needed to make a better Miami where all youth attend safe and supportive schools!
Ubuntu Talking Circle with NAACP and Miami Greater Community
On November 5, Power U, NAACP, students, parents, teachers, MDCPS Board Members, school administrators, United Teachers of Dade, and other community members met about on going issues facing Miami-Dade County Public schools. Restorative Justice trainer, Ruth Jeannoel led participants through the Ubuntu Talking Circle process. During the circle guests discussed ways we can work together to dismantle the school-to-prison pipeline and how to implement restorative justice in an equitable way. This meeting is the beginning of a long-term series that will try to build community power in school board decisions.
Power U Meets with District 1 School Board Member, Dr. Steve Gallon III
Power U youth, organizers, and staff met with Dr. Steve Gallon III, District 1 School Board Member. We want to foster a relationship with Gallon to understand his vision for his district and how Power U aligns with that vision. We want to ensure that our demands are incorporated into his future decisions and used as rhetoric for how he votes on policies. Particularly on polices and decisions that center how the district allocates it’s money around policing and investing in counselors. Our desire is to work cohesively with the school board in order to achieve the ultimate goal, which is safe and supportive schools for all young people.
Movement For Black Lives Townhall with Dream Defenders
On November 14, Power U and Dream Defenders held a community townhall at Florida Memorial University, an HBCU in Miami. The townhall was curated to manifest voting power in South Florida — predominantly new and young voters. As we approach the year mark from mid-term elections, we need to begin building with our communities now. Our communities know exactly what we need and in order to hold those in office accountable. We must come together to discuss those needs.
Black power, political power, who has power to make changes, and what the community needs, took precedent in the overall discussion. Guests worked together on an exercise, which was to build out a help wanted sign for a new Sheriff. The exercise was to envision a world where a sheriff or police actually care about youth and aren’t quick to arrest them.