"The things I experienced in the Encampment were once in a lifetime. I received skills to help me affect justice in my local community. The Encampment not only gave me these skills but also a sense of revival, hope, and inspiration to keep on helping my Latino community and those in need." – Litzy, Oxnard, CA)
Litzy, an undocumented young woman from a farm worker family, empowered by her EFC experience, revived an ailing Dreamers club at her school and went on to Advocate for legislation to protect the rights of farm workers and immigrants. She reached out to a local legislator and connected to the state Dreamers organization. By persevering, she not only created a Safe Zone in her school for undocumented youth but was instrumental in passing district-wide legislation to create other such spaces.
The EFC summer program provides a living experience of community and participatory democracy that fosters engagement, introspection and agency.
In 2019, Encampers participated in EFC's collaborative Pesticide-Free Schools Project in Oxnard, California. The Encampment obtained funding from the New Tudor Foundation and Patagonia to make the vision of pesticide-free school landscaping a reality in this agricultural community that is highly affected by pesticide use. You can read more on our website encampmentforcitizenship.org.
"I helped to renovate an elementary school garden by replacing the soil with pesticide-free soil. I learned about the effects of pesticides on people and the soil, as well as how it can affect areas that the pesticides weren’t originally in due to water runoff. I got a tour of an organic farm and got to see and taste the difference between non-organic and organic strawberries. " – Barry, San Leandro
Arts play a crucial role in the EFC approach to learning and community building.
"I live on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota. The Encampment community has given me the greatest gift, and that is my voice. It has given me a set of tools and skills that help me advocate for Native American struggles. I have been active in the Standing Rock protests."— Deanna M. (SD), 2015 MS, 2017 Intern
Most recent alums do some sort of community service and/or social justice activity after their Encampment experience. These youth are all between 15 and 18 when they participate in the program. The full impact of their EFC experience will be unfolding over the next decades.
We have many EFC alums who have gone on to be well-known public servants and activists such as: Eleanor Holmes Norton, Barney Frank, belvie rooks, Miles Rapoport, Ada Deer, Peter Neufeld, Gale Brewer, Glory Van Scott and Jason Warwin.
Your support means that the EFC can continue to change lives and help young people work for social justice. Every donation – of $10, $25, $50, $100, $250, $500, $1,000 (or more) ($3,500 sponsors an Encamper whose family cannot afford the fee) – is an investment in a more just world for us all. Donate now by using our online system or mail a check to Encampment for Citizenship, PO Box 1210, Aptos, CA 95001-1210. encampmentforcitizenship.org