Alice Walker, an African American novelist, short-story writer, poet, and activist once said, “Poetry is the lifeblood of rebellion, revolution, and the raising of consciousness.”
67 Sueños, a program of the American Friends Service Committee, has taken this quote to heart, as “artivism” has been their main tool in bringing healing to and empowering both marginalized undocumented youth, and youth from families affected by high rates of violence, mass incarceration, deportation, and poverty. 67 Sueños teaches these youth to share their messages of resistance and justice through poetry, chalk art, murals, and much more.
Thanks to an Ed Fund A to Z Fund mini-grant, 9th to 12th grade students attending Rudsdale Newcomer High School and Metwest High School were able to attend bi-weekly poetry workshops provided by 67 Sueños.
Each week, students were exposed to various themes such as the complexities of race and culture. Through these workshops, students found their own voice and power, got out of their comfort zones, and shed light on other struggles and revolutions that were interconnected with their own struggle and liberation through poetry.
At the end of these workshops, an anthology of the student’s original poems titled Decolonizing Our Minds With Our Ancestral Roots was put together and published, and the raw, painful, yet beautiful poetry compiled inside opens our eyes to the realities of being a youth of color in Oakland.
Do you want to be a part of empowering our Oakland youth and creating equitable, excellent public education? Donate to the A to Z Fund here. Thank you!