BECOME A CHANGEMAKER
Ever wonder why our systems never seem to change?
How we go about pushing for change is just as important as why. Community organizing is one of the only ways to build enough power to challenge — and win — against the status quo. And we have a severe need for youth organizing in our local communities.
the coordination of cooperative efforts and campaigning carried out by local residents to promote the interests of their community.
"San Diego's youth citizens are now empowered to transform the housing situation through community organizing"
Definitions from Oxford Languages
We need more youth activists and leaders. Most adult-led youth programs have small cohorts, focus on specific skills, or fail to address the systems that disadvantage us in the first place. At the same time, many youth-led groups, at no fault of their own, lack the resources and networks to harness the power of collective action.
We want to transform the field of youth-led organizing. We want to eradicate the disillusionment, disengagement, and disempowerment we experience as youth. For that, we need you.
The CIVIC YOUTH ACTION NETWORK is a program that recruits, trains, and empowers grassroots youth organizers for systems change and a more inclusive, equitable, and sustainable future.
CYAN members gain access to trainings and workshops that teach you how to organize, mobilize, network, give public
comment, analyze policy, fundraise, network, and so much more. The overwhelming majority of learning is youth-to-youth — we promise we’ll learn just as much from you as you from us.
Member-led collective action campaigns open opportunities in activism and
leadership for youth to apply learned skills to better our future. Housing, transportation, social and racial justice, climate action, and inclusive governance are examples of issues CYAN members can advance solutions for.
Perhaps the most cherished part of CYAN is the close community it fosters. There’s something unparalleled about
fighting for change together, and it forges strong relationships that are fun, unique, and powerful.
"Youth can breach the political realm — they just need knowledge and community."
– Ken Fesler, Associate Executive Director of OTTA United
A GLIMPSE OF OUR ORGANIZING EFFORTS
Here are two examples of past organizing projects to give you an insight into what our work is like and how we make an impact.
In April 2020, we advocated for housing to be the top priority in the Midway development. Through organizing efforts and voicing our opinions in public comments, we were able to create a new map for the redistricting process that better represents the population of San Diego.
In September of 2022, we organized youth in University City to fill out the 2022 University City Plan Update Survey to fight for their future within the context of supporting high-density and mixed-use development.
We spoke up and mobilized support in front of the San Diego Planning Commission on September 29th, 2022, leading to the reform passing in a 6-1 vote.