The Encampment educates young leaders

Arrow and Ayana describe how the Encampment changed their lives

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We were part of this year's Encampment. It changed our lives. Please donate today to keep making it happen for others.

My name is Ayana. I'm 16 years old and live in Brockton, Massachusetts. The Encampment taught me how discrimination has evolved over time and how I can resist it now. Seeing the history and meeting amazing organizers working toward equity today made it real for me. Most of all, learning about my own cultural heritage moved me deeply. I'm proud to own my history in ways I haven't before. The Encampment changed me.

My name is Arrow. I'm 17 years old and a senior at Choctaw Central High School in Mississippi. At the Encampment, I met youth from around the country and we shared our cultures and issues that concern us all. Going out into the nearby communities and seeing directly how they build strength in different ways was powerful. I saw community, poverty, history, anguish, sacrifice and love. Every day, the Encampment taught me more about Mississippi, and myself, and how I can make a difference in my community.

And, as part of the EFC's Get-Out-the-Vote campaign, our fellow Encampers are taking action in different ways: Samara and her mother are helping to get out the vote in Springfield, Massachusetts; Isaiah registered to vote for the first time in Berkeley, California; and Bernice and her mother are starting a nonprofit, Freedom 2.0, in New Jersey, to educate younger voters and encourage them to vote.

All of us 2018 Encampers had a powerful educational experience that changed how we think of ourselves, other youth, and the communities we explored. The Encampment gave us the tools and experiences that make us more effective social justice leaders. Our friends Isaiah, Samara and Bernice are already taking action by organizing get out the vote drives. We want more action like that!

Your continued support means that the EFC can continue to change lives and help young people work for social justice. Every donation – of $50, $100, $250, $500, $1,000 or more ($3500 is a full sponsorship for an Encamper) – is an investment in a more just world for us all.

Donate online right now or send your checks to Encampment for Citizenship, PO Box 1210, Aptos, CA 95001-1210.

PS. Thank you for supporting the Encampment and for making this invaluable experience possible! — Ayana and Arrow

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