NAACP Youth Council

WILKES-BARRE-(WBRE/WYOU)-You can never be too young to have an impact in your community.
    At least that's what a group of teenagers in Wilkes-Barre aims to prove.
    Eyewitness News Reporter Crystal Cranmore has more in this edition of our black history month series.  

This is the executive board of the Wilkes Barre NAACP youth council.
    After several attempts to make the council official, the dream came true last summer when it received it's charter.
    Now, it is a legitimate entity of the national association for the advancement of colored people.
    Emily Laurore was elected president last fall.
    The high school junior is just 14 years old.

 Emily Laurore, NAACP Youth Council says,"I wanted to find a way to interact with people similar to me.. strive for the same goals."
    
    Goals like helping children develop a thirst for knowledge.
    The youth council helped put on this event at king's college last week highlighting African American history.

 Laurore says,"I feel like people are losing the hunger for knowledge and education..and we want to bring education back to the focus"

    Education isn't the only mission.
 In a city often considered too violent, the youth council wants to get teens off the streets and get them involved in positive development within their own communities.

Laurore says"Whether it be programs at a park or volunteering at the soup kitchen"

    First vice president Omar Lee says too often teens get distracted by peer pressure or problems at home.

Omar Lee, NAACP youth council says,"A lot of people are not with their parents and..friends ..if that part is missing, why can't we help"
        
    Youth council advisor Peggy Felton isn't sure why it took so long for the youth council to become official. But since the election last year, the group has grown from just a few members to more than 60.
    Felton not only wants to see that number grow, she wants to encourage people with different ethnicities to join.

 Peggy Felton, youth council advisor says,"We can learn from each other. Once we know each others culture we can respect and get along better and spread that throughout the community"
    
    The opportunity to serve on youth council is preparing the next generation of activists and leaders.
    Giving them the tools, while their young...

 Laurore says,"I would love to see Wilkes Barre where the youth have just a great impact."

    Sticking up for what they believe in and affecting change.

 Omar Lee, 1ST Vice President says,"It's a phenomenal team, phenomenal staff....we're just there to help people. that's our mission"

    If anyone is interested in learning more about what the youth council has planned for the future, they have a board meeting that's open to the public on February 29th.
    It will be held at the l-C-C corporate center at 5pm.

The youth council also has a community service event planned tomorrow.
    They'll be volunteering at St. Vincent's soup kitchen.
 


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