As many of you know, the Annual Mayor’s Youth Summit was this past Saturday, April 2nd. This is a day dedicated to giving the youth of Brockton a voice and helping them to raise their concerns to the Mayor and other City Officials. You also may or may not know that the kids at Brockton High made a special video inviting the Celtics to come and support them at the Summit. If you haven’t seen it yet, check it out:
Sadly, even after seeing this AWESOME video made entirely by youth, the Celtics did not come. Okay, okay, they are gearing up for Playoff Season so I guess we can’t be too mad at them…I’m sure they were very tempted to participate! Afterall, amidst their busy schedules, they did manage to send a signed Perkins jersey so we’ll let it slide this time. But either way, the video has serious swag.
Thankfully, the Celtics were just one potential highlight of the Summit. Thanks to the coordination efforts of Patricia Godio and the Mayor’s Youth Summit Planning Committee, there were tons of fabulous highlights from the day!! I’ve decided to make a list of my top 10 Favorite Moments from the Mayor’s Youth Summit because it was that good!
10.) Raffle Prizes! Bertucci’s gift cards, memberships to the teen workout programs at the Y, signed Red Sox and Celtics gear, and more! There was something for everyone and I am especially jealous of those Dunkin Donuts gift cards!
8.) The entertainment! ImprovBoston made us laugh and helped get us energized for the day! Also, Higher Heights Productions’ performance of “The Chronicles of Nikita Wells” took a critical look at the issues in Brockton and got youth geared up to talk about these issues in their breakout sessions!
7.) The Volunteers & Resource Fair! This day would not have been the huge success that it was had it not been for the volunteers who were there to make sure it ran smoothly! Volunteers were made up of parents, partner organizations and even sorority groups! There were also lots of great organizations that volunteered their time to host resource tables. I hope the kids took advantage of the helpful information that agencies like Maria Talks, Gateway to College and School on Wheels were there to provide!
6.) Talent Show! Youth showed off their skills! From playing the piano and singing, to drumming and beatboxing, we had it all!
5.) Breakout Sessions! Youth had the opportunity to have real talk with the peer facilitators and listen about how their needs relate to those of other youth in the City.
4.) The Governor of Massachusetts! Governor Patrick came out on a Saturday to support Brockton kids. Whatever side of the political lines you may fall on, it’s important for them to see that he and the other politicians are listening to them and want to continue to support them as best they can!
3.) The Mayor and Prominent School Officials Looking to Create Change! Mayor Balzotti, Superintendent Malone and Dr. Szachowitz were all on hand to listen to the feedback that the peer facilitators gathered from their breakout sessions. Kudos to them for making our youth’s concerns a number one priority, especially on a Saturday!
2.) Empowered Brockton Youth! The kids of our City took advantage of their chance to speak and share their ideas on how to improve Brockton! They were eloquent, professional and presented real issues that impact them on a daily basis! I thank them for their inspiring words that captivated their peers and the adults in the audience!
1.) FREE! Everything was free! Okay, so maybe that’s not really a moment, but it was a real highlight to the whole event. T-shirts, food, dance parties, opportunity for change, you name it, Mayor Balzotti’s Youth Summit had it all!
Seriously though, it was a wonderful day. Even though I went to Brockton High School, I never attended a Mayor’s Youth Summit because I always had track meets that conflicted with the event. I’m glad I finally got to participate! Thank you to the elected officials, volunteers and most importantly, the YOUTH, for making this day a huge success!