Antigonish is a community rich in innovative development projects and dedicated social justice organizers. The 4th annual Youth Activism Conference (YAC), (March 6th-8th, 2015), honors these assets, while engaging youth in the community. This years theme, ‘Journeys to Justice: Stories, Actions, and Learning Together,’ connects local community youth and activists with Nova Scotian initiatives to build the momentum of social justice organizing in Antigonish town and county. Particularly, we hope to engage local high school students who are often uninvited to these important discussions, to open their eyes to the plethora of opportunities for youth engagement at the community level. The YAC is a weekend long event connecting our local communities to global issues of social justice. It seeks to foster a new generation of activists in Antigonish. Through inspiring keynotes, local activists, and panel and plenary discussions, we hope to connect community youth to the wide range of social justice organizations and youth-led efforts in Antigonish. Participating in the YAC is an educational experience like no other. By stretching the boundaries of experiential education, we open the eyes, hearts and minds of local youth by engaging them in how they can participate in global issues in their own communities. The opportunity acts as a catalyst for social change in this community, inspiring a new generation of socially engaged youth to pave the way for Antigonish town and county.
Also, this provides a space for relationship building with more seasoned activists and initiate mentorship opportunities. After establishing relationships between StFX students, community youth and organizations, we will create a virtual platform to stay connected on events and opportunities for community engagement. This will stretch the impact of the YAC beyond the weekend itself by continuing to provide opportunities for youth engagement in Antigonish.
Funded by Antigonish, NS (January 2015)