ENGAGED CITIZENS PROGRAM
We believe that a democracy only functions well when all of its citizens’ voices are represented and valued in the decision-making process. Yet, for a variety of reasons, this is not currently happening. ECP is developed to provide our participants the knowledge, skills and motivation necessary to participate in the decision making of their cities and state so to achieve positive community change. Many African diaspora women are looking for opportunities to act on their interests and get involved with their community. Drawn from best practices and research, holistic approach of civic engagement, community leaders’ guidance, ECP is an avenue for action and a vehicle for such involvement.
Engaged Citizens Program offers the following topics:
Public Policy and Framing
African diaspora women participate in variety of institutions in Minnesota, such as schools,
trade unions, health care. These women have human capital that can be tapped into in order to
affect public policies. In this program participants learn the policymaking process as well as how
to influence and monitor public policy which in turns develops democratic values and feelings of
political efficacy in its participants.
Community organizing is all about people, power, and change – it starts with people and
relationships, is focused on shifting power, and aims to create lasting change. We coach the
participants how to strategize turning their resources into the power they need to make the
change they desire.
Walid (Parent) Leadership
Community organizing and walid leadership are central to achieving meaningful changes,
including improving the learning, development, and health of children and creating an
institutional reform within school districts and states. In this period of a global pandemic,
unemployment and racial justice uprising, the stakes are even higher for parents, who are often
excluded from the decision-making process about changes happening in the school system today.
In this program we discuss school-to-prison pipeline and that being in school is not the same as
learning. They also learn about budgets, policy, and laws that effect children.
Voter Education & Civic Literacy Training
Voting is imperative to our democracy; it is the most direct way eligible individuals can
peacefully express their political preferences.
Through our Voter Education programs, we are able to connect first-time voters with essential
information like how and where to vote, voter rights and responsibilities, candidates and issues
on the ballot, the recognition of voter disenfranchisement, and primary and caucusing processes.