$10,000 to The Abundant Table for the Rooted Futures project. Rooted Futures’ goal is to engage and equip Ventura County youth (primarily youth of color and low-income youth) to become active participants in addressing food-related inequalities in health, nutrition and living environments. The project will develop a curriculum that will teach youth about the benefits of healthy food and prepare them to use their new knowledge and experiences to create healthy and equitable changes in their families, communities and local schools.
$4,900 to support the Arts for Action Paint Not Prison project, located in South Oxnard. This project engages youth on probation for graffiti violations in leadership development, community organizing and community mural production. The grant will fund leadership development among marginalized youth for the expansion of Youth Councils to support these leaders in advocating for economically just fines and/or a sweat equity option for graffiti offenders, and to use visual arts and dance as means of empowerment. Coastal Alliance United for a Sustainable Economy (CAUSE) is the fiscal sponsor for Arts for Action.
$10,000 to support the One Step Adelante program of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ventura County, Inc. This program, conceived by youth leaders who established the One Step a la Vez teen drop-in center, will provide education on local issues and develop leaders for social justice issues in the Piru and Fillmore areas. The goal is to bring systemic change to these often overlooked communities. Specifically, the program will encourage a youth-led assessment of issues in both communities and support youth advocacy efforts to implement systemic change in their communities.
$9,053 to the Coalition for Sustainable Transportation (COAST) for the Growing the Grassroots project. This project is designed to nurture a grassroots base of bus riders who can advocate for transportation needs. By developing leadership in a broad base of engaged transit riders, this effort can affect funding, access and equity. Short term goals include preserving transit access against budget cuts while long term goals are aimed at building a coalition that can advocate to influence long term transportation policy that will impact residents for generations.
$6,047 to the El Centrito Family Learning Centers for the Padres Promotores Education Project. This project is an effort to engage and organize parents to address the institutionalized educational barriers that disrupt Latino students from achieving their path to higher education. The goal of this project, which will train and empower parents to be community educators, is to provide Latino parents in Oxnard with the knowledge and tools to advocate for their children’s educational needs and increase the college-going rate of Oxnard’s Latino students.
$10,000 for Organizacion en California de Líderes Campesinas for the Ventura County Campesina Policy Institute. Through the Institute, farmworker women (campesinas) will learn the hands-on skills needed to assess priority issues, develop and implement action plans, mobilize the community, and bring the campesina voice to the public realm, ultimately helping to create social change to better protect farmworker women in Ventura County and beyond.