Building Our Future is excited to partner with Kenosha Unified School District and the African American Youth Initiative (AAYI) to host monthly Youth CommUNITY Conversations. Conversations will take place the last Wednesday of every month, 4-6 PM, through May! Join us at Herzing University to lift your voice, be heard, and create the change you want to see in the Kenosha community.
Doors open at 4; convos start at 4:30. Refreshments provided, masks required.
For more information, please contact Yolanda Jackson-Lewis at firstname.lastname@example.org, or Brandon Morris at email@example.com.
Established January 2017, the Building Our Future Leadership Table was formed to guide and advocate for the work of Building Our Future, which brings together all sectors in Kenosha County to improve student outcomes from cradle to career. High School students were engaged from the start of this work. With the support of school districts, three parents and students took a step and joined the team. Darian Lott was one of them.
Darian was born in Racine, Wisconsin. He attended the Head Start program in Racine and then attended Dresden Elementary until he moved to Kenosha, Darian started at Stoker Elementary, then finished Wilson Elementary. He then attended Bullen Middle and has recently graduated from Lakeview Tech.
“The poverties in education in certain areas was one of the biggest shocks from joining the Leadership Table,” he says about his experience. “But it’s good to see businesses and people in the community that are trying to help out the education and upbringing of the kids.”
Darian was approached by his principal at Lakeview asking if he would be interested in participating in Building Our Future. Darian saw this as an opportunity to share his story, his accomplishments, and connect with other students so they don’t feel as though they’re alone.
“I want to set an example of no matter what situation, neighborhood, or nationality anyone may be, they can succeed in life if they work hard for it,” he says. “If I had to share my story, it would be of how I, coming from a low income family and neighborhood, have been successful in school and in accomplishing my dreams.”
Darian, a recipient of the Tech Excellence Award and Gateway Promise, will be heading to Gateway for two years until he transfers to UW-Whitewater, where he plans to major in video game design and Computer numerical control (CNC) programming. Since he was a kid, Darian has wanted to become a video game designer, and the scholarships he’s received for all of his hard work are helping him get one step closer to that goal.
Why Join the Leadership Table?
“It’s important to have feedback from students in the community on how they grew up here and their stories in the areas they grew up in.”
For more information and how to get involved, go to http://www.buildingourfuturekc.org/get-involved.html.
Established January 2017, the Building Our Future Leadership Table was formed to guide and advocate for the work of Building Our Future. In an effort to hear from different parts of the Kenosha County community, Building Our Future engaged families from the onset. Madison Zapata is one of the three high school representatives from this year’s Table, and is being recognized for her work both in Building Our Future and in school.
Madison was born and raised here in Kenosha, Wisconsin. She attended Somers Elementary, Bullen Middle, and just recently graduated from Harborside Academy.
“I got involved with the Leadership Table mainly because of my best friend Kyle. Kyle has autism and after being recognized for helping him everyday in our government class, my principal then asked me if I wanted to be a part of this organization.” She says that being a part of this group has helped her learn more about the communities within Kenosha County and recognize the work done by our partners.
“I didn’t know how much our kids needed the help that they deserve. What everyone deserves.” Madison wants students to have an equal opportunity for the education that they need to succeed as well as more inclusion of all students at school from all different backgrounds.
Madison will be attending University of Wisconsin - Green Bay in the fall majoring in history and hopes to one day become a museum curator.
Why Join the Leadership Table?
"I recommend more students to get involved with the leadership table because it can really open your eyes to what goes on in our community, and it can give high school students achance to help the community give successful paths to younger students."
For more information and how to get involved, visit our "Get Involved" webpage.