Y.O.U.  //  YOUth News                                                                      December 20, 2017


As we wrap up our programming for the winter break, we are eagerly looking forward to the new year, and to Diverse Communities United (DCU)! Join us on Saturday, January 13th from 2:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the ETHS Auditorium to watch our youth share their artistic interpretations of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s legacy!
Below, you'll find an invitation to DCU and an interview with two members of the Youth Planning Committee who reveal what DCU means to them. In addition, learn about how our partners have made this holiday season extra special for our youth and families.
As always, we are grateful for your role in helping expand opportunity and empower youth in 2017. On behalf of the Y.O.U. family, I wish you a safe, healthy, and happy holiday season!
Marianne Moberly
Interim Executive Director

P.S. Celebrate our year of incredible programming by checking out our 2017 Annual Report.

December's Faces of Y.O.U.: Our DCU Youth Committee
Y.O.U.'s 2017  DCU  Youth Committee takes the stage to performing original spoken word poetry.

For most high schoolers, the end of the year means looking forward to a break from school and a chance to unwind. For five students from ETHS, the end of the year also means just a few more weeks to prepare for Y.O.U.'s biggest event of the year -- Diverse Communities United! DCU is a youth-led community event that gives over 200 young people from across Y.O.U. sites the chance to share their vision for realizing Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s legacy of a peaceful, just and equitable world. We sat down with ETHS students Mina Jue and Nia Williams -- members of the DCU Youth Committee -- to ask them what this year's DCU is all about and why they want you to be there.

Q: What role will you play at DCU this year as members of the youth-led DCU Committee?
A: We came up with the theme, we are interviewing community members to see how the theme relates to their life, and we're going on site visits to all the Y.O.U. sites to help them bring their pieces to the next level. At the event, we'll be emceeing and sharing our poetry! We are also promoting the event at ETHS and in the community to get people excited about coming!

Q: What inspired this year's theme--"I am deliberate and afraid of nothing"?
A: This year, we wanted to incorporate the female perspective of the civil rights movement on a day that typically features a male voice. We think that the poetry and work of Audre Lorde -- a black, female poet and member of the LGBTQ+ community -- connect to the work of Martin Luther King Jr. by supporting equity for all groups.

Q: What does "I am deliberate and afraid of nothing" mean to you?
A: This quote sparked a lot of discussion in our group. To me, it means that we are ready to take action instead of just reacting to inequities. As a black woman who identifies as part of the LGBTQ+ community, I feel like I am fighting for my people and I want it to have a positive impact. I am ready to have tough conversations about what it means to be a black, queer woman in today's society.

Q: What does it mean to honor MLK's legacy?
A: We think it's about something bigger than MLK -- it's more than just one person who did this. We think it is important to highlight other voices who made an impact during this movement. It's about everyone that struggles and fights for their rights. And MLK Day is a time to reflect on how far we've come and how far we still have to go. A day to think about how I can play a part in affecting change.

Q: What do you like about DCU?
A: I enjoy having the responsibility of planning and organizing the event. It is empowering to be able to build community.. DCU really brings everyone together, and it shows the community that young people do care and we are trying to affect positive change.

Q: What would you say to anyone thinking about coming to DCU?
A: You should definitely come! We as young people are putting this all together and we think everyone will learn a lot.

Diverse  Communities  United 2018

Y.O.U. youth prepare backstage at Y.O.U.'s 2017 Diverse Communities United event.

Y.O.U. is thrilled to invite you to our 12th annual Diverse Communities United (DCU), a celebration of peace, diversity, unity, leadership, and service held in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Join us on:

Saturday, January 13th, 2018*
2:00 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.
ETHS Auditorium | 1600 Church Street, Evanston

Our youth leadership committee has chosen this year's theme: "I am deliberate and afraid of nothing", a quote from Audre Lorde. The event will feature artwork and performances by youth from across Evanston and Skokie who seek to realize Dr. King's vision today. The event is free, family-friendly, and open to all ages. Immediately following the program, join us for a community reception featuring youth artwork. *Please note that we are moving the event from its traditional time on MLK Day to Saturday.

Click "going" on our Facebook Event and follow us on Instagram for live updates and sneak peeks into our youth's preparation in the weeks leading up to the event!

We can't wait to welcome you at DCU 2018!
Our Partners Make Wishes Come True

Thank you to our partners for helping us provide over 500 wishes to our youth and families this holiday season!

The holidays are a time of celebration and this year we have so many partners to celebrate for their support of Y.O.U. youth and families!

Each year, with the support of our partners, we organize a personalized holiday gift program for our youth and families, inviting and fulfilling holiday gift wishes. This year, we collected over 500 wishes and partnered with First United Methodist Church, Grace Lutheran Church, Kellogg Business School at Northwestern University, and our own Board and staff to help make these wishes come true. We are truly humbled by the overwhelming support our community has provided to our youth and families this holiday season!
About Y.O.U.


Y.O.U. works to ensure every young person has the opportunity to succeed. We partner with families, schools, and community organizations to provide academic, social, and emotional support where it is most needed, closing the gap between youth and opportunity. Learn more at www.youthopportunity.org.



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Join Us for DCU!

Y.O.U.'s annual
 Martin Luther King Jr. Day event is coming up on:

Saturday, January 13th 2017
2:00 - 3:30 p.m.
ETHS Auditorium

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