WHAT: In anticipation of the 10th anniversary of 9/11, young people across the country will demonstrate through service to others that they want to live in a world of compassion and cooperation where the best of each person is brought out. They are seizing the initiative to create the world they want to live in. They want no part of the fear and extremism that have defined the last ten years. Instead, they are acting to make real a vision of a united and compassionate world in 2021.
In the process, a new generation of leaders will be strengthened to learn self-reliance, personal responsibility and develop the resolve to make a positive impact in the global community.
Through the service they perform, and the Unity Project’s Transformation Exercises, they will be learning valuable lessons about their hidden strengths. They will learn how to identify needs in their community. Together, these will ignite a vision of what they are capable of and provide the motivation to finish school and pursue a career or trade. They will forge friendships and working partnerships with their peers all over the world to knit a fabric of peace and stability out of the broken cords of despair and conflict they see around them.
They did not create the climate of fear and extremism they are growing up in. They don’t want these negative themes to govern their lives. They have a say in what they will do about it. They want the next decade to be about compassion and cooperation, not fear and extremism. Working together toward that vision of 2021, in thousands of places around the world, act by act, they are building that world. This Unity Project initiative is called, “ReachUP! 2021.”
WHY: The 10th anniversary of 9/11 is an opportunity for this generation of young people to say that the lesson of 9/11 is not that we should fear each other or label each other as enemies. We recognize that we have another choice. We choose compassion and cooperation instead of fear and anger. We want this choice to be demonstrated in countless acts of cooperative service throughout the country.
In this way, as media attention turns to the anniversary, we will be ready with dynamic positive examples of the future we are building now. Young people will be role models for a positive future and set the tone for the national dialogue for the next decade.
HOW: The Unity Project will provide its service based resilience building training and programming to any community-based organization that wants to participate in ReachUP! USA. These services will raise the caliber of skills of our partners so they can better help the kids they serve.
The Unity Project methods empower kids to identify and fix problems that affect their lives. Since these problems are things the kids feel strongly about, they are committed to finding a solution and seeing it through.
At the same time, they elevate the culture of their schools and communities and learn problem solving and group cooperation skills guided by the highly innovative and effective Unity Project Transformation Process. Kids develop a vision for their future, a sense of hope in a stronger community and the skills they need to have the confidence to move their lives forward in a positive way. The more kids develop these core strengths, the less pull they feel to dysfunctional behaviors that cripple a young person’s growth.
We intend to highlight in the media specific youth projects across the country from now until the 10th anniversary of 9/11. In this way, we intend to uplift the tone of the discussion in the country about the meaning of the anniversary and where we are going as a nation in the next decade.
WHEN: Trainings for participating community-based organizations in New York City began in November, 2010 and are continuing nationally since then. Youth service activities were launched after January 1, 2011 and will continue through 9-11-2011. There will be culminating events around the anniversary of 9/11.
After 9/11, the work will continue into the next phase of youth capacity building as project “2021” to raise the culture in schools and communities, improve high-school graduation rates and college matriculation as well as prepare graduates for the workforce.
WHO: The Unity Project (a 501(c)3 corporation) will host these activities. Any community-based organization, school or after-school program across the country is eligible to participate. The Department of Youth and Community Development of the City of New York and some of its contractees are among the first participants in this effort.
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CONTACT: email@example.com at (203) 241-5525.
DONATE: By PayPal at www.unityproject.org.
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