YRP and BYR Youth 3-part engagement series- in the summer of 2021 BYR Youth in collaboration with the York Regional Police hosted a 3 Part Youth engagement series. Part of the series was a conversation with Black youth and allies speaking with the Diversity and Inclusion Bureau about Anti-Black racism and police where youth were able to have frank conversations and provide suggestions to the police. Part 2 Was a bigger conversation with Black youth and Allies speaking with upper management about Anti-black racism and assisting YRP with their strategic Plan. Part 3 was an in-person event “Protect the Village” with over 50 Black youth and Allies where youth learned about their rights, Anti-Black racism, mental health, human rights and had an opportunity to speak with police about anything.
BYR Youth collaborated with YRP/PCAC to help plan and host the YRP Social Justice in York Region Youth Annual Conference. 50 Youth throughout YR were able to come to learn about Human rights, social justice, hate crime prevention, mental health
Ongoing discussions with MP's about disrupting forms of Anti-Black Racism in our schools and in our communities. Working together on finding viable ways to empower and provide opportunities for youth in senior high school, post-secondary school, and through avenues of entrepreneurship.
Meeting with senior staff members to engage in discussion and an action-oriented solution required for the marginalization of youth voice in York Region.
Partaking in a multi-layered focus group for the City of Vaughan to Plan to Eliminate Anti-Black Racism
Participated in February History month 2021 and 2022 hosted by the Federal Liberals in Markham/Stouffville. BYR youth was a representative on a panel for the Municipality of York Region. It was to share a youth perspective on dismantling Anti-Black and Anti-Oppressive practices in the workplace and school, and to support what is needed by the municipal systems to empower and support Black youth. Additionally, the panel was to illustrate the many dimensions of Black Excellence and Resilience.
The BYR Youth Chair Kayla Escoffery had the opportunity to be a part of the Ontario Secondary Teachers’ Federation Status of Women Conference by being a panelist on their Human Right Panel. On the panel, she discussed what recovering from the impacts of COVID-19 looks like from the perspective of supporting Black Youth in the classroom with the racial trauma that came from the Black Lives Movement in 2020 after the death of George Floyd.
In September 2023, we were asked to be part of a York Region initiative with other organizations to put on Fund Fair for parents, students and the community. The purpose was to comet together to stress the importance of equitable and fair publicly funded education.
In October 2023 BYR Youth took part in a conference that was to train and support equity, anti-Black racism and Anti-Oppression training among teachers and education workers.
BYR youth had three members partake on it for a year. Raising awareness, having diverse identity to ensure we celebrate and create active space for all youth
Central Tech High School and a few Elementary schools in York Region - BYR Youth went in pairs to different speaking engagements to empower youth in GTHA about actions to take to form Black Student Associations, to use their voice to dismantle ABR in their communities, and to build relationships among Black and Racialized students
Edmonton School grades 4-6 reached out to have a panel with BYR youth - racism, actions tangible for youth, and curriculum and race
The BYR Youth Conference was designed for Black youth and allies across the Greater Toronto Area to address anti-Black racism. Throughout this conference, youth were given opportunities to network with others and attend workshops about various topics, such as BSAs, public speaking, mental health, intersectionality, discrimination and career tips. This conference would not be possible without the wonderful people at YOF and the Ontario Trillium Foundation, as they are to thank for granting us the money to help make this idea come to life.
Vaughan Secondary School with other Black leaders in York Region helped to get this school renamed to Hodan Naleyeh. It was to start to remove overt oppressive ABR in the YRDSB
youth were panelist March 21, 2022 BYR youth was on the online panel for International Day for the Elimination of Racism hosted by Toronto York Region Labour Council to bring our voice and actions on how to dismantle Anti-Black Racism in schools, policing and social systems
Be yourself, see yourself Events- part of a two part panel discussion with a provincial third party organization is seeking discussion on data equity, lived experience, and to answer any possible questions from a multi-generational audience.
To support an initiative created by one of our organizations adult mentors, BYR Youth collected food donations at our December in-person meeting. These food items were then donated to Ms. Kendra who was able to give them to individuals and families in need living in Georgina, Ontario.
This market will allow Black Youth Entrepreneurs ages 15-30 to sell and promote their products and services. It will have space for Black youth artists to sell and showcase their bodies of work. The pop-up will also feature a Black youth DJ, a panel of experienced Black youth entrepreneurs, catered food and more. The hope is to have about 20 booths on display to the public.
Conversations as part of a focus group for school-to-prison pipeline research being conducted by BLAC. The reason for participation is to engage youth voices with a deeply important youth issue.
Social media training by youth activist Riya Bhatla (co-chair of York Communities for Public Education and York University student) - utilizing social media for advocacy and our organization's mandates. Learning how to create professional and impactful posts as a youth
Debating, how to speak, skills of empowerment. A program giving youth an opportunity to learn and practice important public speaking, debate, and general meeting etiquette.
Planning and organizing the event with youth from Future Majority to empower youth voice with voting and taking action on issues within their communities - coaching youth on how to speak with local politicians to hold them accountable about public issues.