by J’Mya Gray-Martinez
San Francisco Chronicle reporter Chip Johnson blamed problems with youth centers (two open and a third about to open) in West Oakland on lack of staff and programs.
Journalism 1 decided to pitch in, providing insight into what should be included in local youth centers and what also needs reform.
“We should have more programs at school instead of at youth centers, because it’s easier for students to get their SAT prep, help on their homework or class work right here.” (Abbas Hassan)
“More music, dancing, singing, college. Students are bored after school. So they need something to do. If you have these programs then the kids won’t need to do drugs or harmful things like that.” (Jaden Nixon, who transferred out of McClymonds)
“I’m happy with the programs that Oakland has to offer me. I can go to the YMCA on weekends and the Boys & Girls Club on weekdays. They have sports for you to play and they’re very safe. The programs are kind of healthy but you can get good exercise. It keeps the violence away. (Parrish Kendricks)
“Healthy living programs. Not just with eating but when it comes to relationships, violence, and interactions. I want to see programs that will affect the youth like scared straight programs. Also, I want to see more people kids can trust and rely on. Lastly, I want to see more jobs like YEP or Youth Uprising.” (Kaya LaForte)
“I would like to see fun programs. Also educational programs that will help us in the long run. For example, a program that teaches you useful things like how to write a resume, fill out a college application and things like that. I would really like to see tutoring programs also.” (Hailey King)
“We need more fine Arts and Educational Programs because there are a lot of talented kids I know around Oakland that don’t get a chance to show their true talents, and then they get caught up in gangs, drugs, and violence.” (J’Mya Gray-Martinez)
In Oakland, I believe we need to provide more programs during school hours so students are forced to go. (Quaylin Wesley)
Why I miss San Francisco
Even the new Bay Bridge can’t compete with views from San Francisco
opinion piece by Marlena Younger
I miss the views. Stunning vistas, dotted hills, the blueness of the Bay, Ocean Beach with its limpet shells and sand dollars.
And then there’s the mobility of living in San Francisco: the buses are cheaper and it feels safer, less violent.
On a typical morning on Potrero Hill, I could jump out of bed and race down the street to Potrero Hill Neighborhood House to take a Zumba class. It’s high energy dance with samba music, Latin jazz, Cupid shuffle. Cafés like JB’s Place open in the wee hours. People mill around Safeway on 17th and Potrero street.
My neighborhood in north Oakland (ice city: “we ain’t no squares we polar bears” Mistah Fab) is less lively and more dangerous. There’s a gang injunction that limits the freedom of lots of youths and people in their 20s in your neighborhood.
My job in San Francisco was where I danced — helping people do the homework and teaching hip hop dancing. I combined strong academics — I don’t even have Spanish this year. And although the pay is the same, my after-school job in the East Bay is in San Leandro, an hour and a half from my house.
It’s fun living in north Oakland, but I also miss all of my friends and family, and on top I miss being in the hood. I miss going everywhere and knowing everybody.
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Posted in after school, business, changes, Commentary, community, commute, dance, Education, jobs, opinion, popularity, relationships, resilience, rigor, School News, stress, summer jobs, violence, work, Youth
Tagged AC Transit, ice city, latino, Marlena Younger, north oakland, Potrero Hill, San Francisco, San Francisco. McClymonds, summer job, Zumba