Summit Uses New Media To Promote Youth Involvement

10:15am | More than 50 local youths participated in a day summit to discuss leading healthy lifestyles at the Holiday Inn in downtown Long Beach over the weekend, as several organizations aimed at improving the quality of life for at-risk teens came together to learn and discuss how using new media tools can help them get involved in their communities.

The event is called the MO Project, and an organization called CANFIT (Community, Adolescents, Nutrition, Fitness) holds them all over the nation to give youngsters the chance to share their stories of getting involved with the use of social media such as YouTube. Teens tell their tales of community activism, which sparks discussion among the group about the best ways to make a difference.

In one video, a young lady recites a poem about the things she sees on the streets in her crime-ridden neighborhood. In another, a young man raps about the benefits of eating nutritiously.

On Saturday, local youths from organizations such as Long Beach Weed & Seed, the Boys & Girls Club of Long Beach, Educated Men With Meaningful Messages and Network For A Healthy California participated.

The event was significant and positive, particularly because the groups that participated typically aim to promote good decision-making and healthy living among at-risk youth. The successes of Weed & Seed as an anti-gang youth support organization that encourages volunteerism have been well documented, while Educated Men With Meaningful Messages focuses specifically on educating Southeast Asian teen males on pregnancy prevention and other community issues. Bringing all of the groups and their ideas together made for a productive day of discussion and community involvement.



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