Grads to host youth day

Florida A&M University’s Community Psychology Graduate Program will host its first “We Believe in Youth Day” Saturday in order to reach Tallahassee’s youth.

The event will take place at the Orange Avenue Apartment Complex and is open to youth between the ages of 11 and 16.

Beverly Mount, who serves on the event’s planning committee said the purpose of the event is to provide opportunities for youth and discuss their future aspirations.

“We would like to enhance the quality of life, and many of them are struggling with peer pressure, and we would like to help them find resources to deal with these challenges,” said Mount, 25, a graduate community psychology student from Tallahassee.

Professor Huberta Jackson-Lowmn, a committee member for the event, said political figures such as the Leon County Commissioners Akin Akinyemi and Andrew Gillum will serve as keynote speakers.

“We are asking the speakers to focus on any little anecdotes they have to share with the youth,” Jackson-Lowman said. “Anything they have overcome and explain the importance of using resources they have in the community.”

Jackson-Loman said with personal messages from elders, the youth can gain a sense of security when they are in their communities.

“It’s more so helping them to realize they aren’t alone and make them feel safe against things that may come up against,” she said.

Navah Jackson, a member of the marketing committee, said targeting Tallahassee’s youth was no accident.

“A lot of organizations [in Tallahassee] don’t cater to those children of those demographics,” said Jackson, 22, a graduate community psychology student. “These kids don’t feel the same since of empowerment that others have.”

Jackson added that the more organizations the youth know exists, the more help they can receive within their community.

Mount said the event will have entertainment, discussion groups and lectures as well as provide an opportunity for youth to network with attendees and the department.

“We are trying to tell these kids that if you don’t have mom or dad or grandparents, you can go home to turn to that they can turn to different resources,” she said.

Jackson said the community psychology program has been involved in the community for the past two years and hosted similar events.

“We hope to turn this into an annual event that community psychology and FAMU is known for hosting,” Jackson said.

Other participants include: Jann Tucker-Pettway, Guardian ad Litem Program; Shelia Morris, Department of Health; Jocelyn Hayes, Girl Scout Council of the Apalachee Bend, Inc.; Ahmad Aliyy, High Five Sport & Academic Foundation; Wash Anderson, Tallahassee Urban League.

For more information on the event contact Beverly Mount at (850) 980-0676.