Our mission is to educate and empower future latino leaders. To provide them with the confidence, support, and skills necessary so they can take an active role in their community’s development.
Mi Familia Vota (MFV) Education Fund’s Youth Leadership and Civic Engagement Program is a 5-month program designed to prepare and emerge the young Latino electorate (17-24-year-old) as agents of change through continuous civic engagement opportunities. The program will be implemented in Houston, Texas. The program will be implemented in partnership with School Districts and Higher Learning Institutions, for example in Houston, partners include Lone Star College System’s Center for Civic Engagement, the University of Houston-Downtown and Houston ISD.
Students will meet for a five day leadership summit in July which will include leadership development workshops, discussion of Latino Youth Issues, prominent guest speakers, and a mock town hall meetings with elected officials from local and state level. The summit will end with an induction ceremony to commemorate the student’s initiation as Emerging Latino Leader Fellow.
Additionally, students will meet every other week (beginning September) to help research, evaluate, and provide recommendations for topics to be discussed at the Sheriff town hall and the 2016 Youth Summit.
Vision and Purpose
Widespread civic engagement is the lifeblood of any well-functioning democratic society. Unfortunately, many groups are not equally involved in public life. According to the Center for Information and Research on Civic Engagement, Latino youth are the least engaged and most civically alienated ethnic and racial group in the United States. Two out of every five Latino youth do not feel connected to civic life. This is especially troubling in a city like Houston where Latinos are the single largest ethnic group. We seek to promote awareness of the issues facing local Latinos while at the same time encouraging electoral participation to ensure their voice is heard at all levels of government.
The Emerging Latino Leaders Fellowship envisions a future where Latino youth take ownership of their community. First, we must challenge talented young Latinos to see themselves as more then just passive community members, but active agents of change. By empowering the youth of today, we can work towards building a healthy and vibrant society for tomorrow.