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Witnesses to Hunger Youth Forum

Three children and two adults speaking on a panel

August 19, 2017

On Saturday, August 19, Witnesses to Hunger held a Youth Forum and Back-to-School Party, a day-long celebration of youth advocacy and anti-poverty activism in Philadelphia. Witnesses from Philadelphia and Boston came together to promote the work of Witnesses to Hunger and give away free school supplies to West Philadelphia community members.

The back-to-school party also served as a space for youth and their families to learn about the work of other community organizations and initiatives Among the participating organizations were the Free Library of Philadelphia’s Get Hype Initiative, Apiary Magazine, Synergy Project at Valley Youth House, and People’s Emergency Center.

Featuring a live DJ, face-painting, and live musical performances and photo exhibits by students from the Village of Arts and Humanities, the Witnesses to Hunger back-to-school party provided a much-needed space for Philadelphians to come together and share experiences and ways to get involved in their community.

The main event of the day was a youth panel conversation with children of Witnesses members speaking on their experiences with food insecurity and housing instability, ending with a call for safer communities, better housing opportunities, and improvements in the education system beginning with increased support structures for students living in poverty.

View the video of the panel discussion to see how these brave young people show the power and importance of giving youth voices a platform in the fight against poverty.

The Youth Forum and Back-to-School Party marked the beginning of Witnesses to Hunger’s commitment to youth outreach, advocacy, and activism.  They received over 125 donations of supplies. Each bag was valued at approximately $75 and 63 bags were distributed.

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