At our Canoga Park/ RUTH YouthBuild site, their Trimester 2 Community Action Project for the 2022-23 school year was focused on understanding homelessness in their community. Their essential questions were:
- What are the root causes of homelessness in our community?
- How can our students make a positive impact on the lives of our neighbors experiencing homelessness?
Canoga Park students attended workshops about the causes of homelessness, including the housing crisis and inflation, to learn more about the issue. Additionally, students researched community nonprofit organizations that were already working with neighbors experiencing homelessness and presented on their findings, voting on the non-profit they wanted to support. Members of RUTH YouthBuild's Policy Council met with Congressman Tony Cardenas to have a roundtable discussion about housing insecurity. Students also delivered hygiene kits to their neighbors experiencing homelessness.
Finally, they organized a car wash fundraiser, which involved making posters, selling tickets, and washing cars, all to support their community. Ultimately, the students were able to raise and donate $300 to the Family Rescue Center because of their hard work. They hope to continue collaborating with the Family Rescue Center on future events. In May, they plan to organize a Policy Council trip to Sacramento for youth members to engage with elected officials and other youth leaders about critical issues, including homelessness.
Check out more photos from the car wash fundraiser below: