On May 13th, the FEEST Fam gathered virtually for our Spring Fundraising Event, Fresh Flavor, Fresh Vision! to celebrate the accomplishments of our youth leaders over the past year, and to also unveil updates on FEEST’s Mission & Vision. We were joined by marvelous community members, from parents to friends, family, and loved ones to learn what FEEST has been up to in 2022 and where we are going! Our event was emceed by our very own staff member, Cece & FEEST Alum, Heena.
We had a night that kicked off with games, like Milling, where we got to connect with each other one-on-one. This was important because in the world we are living in now, connection, especially online, has been a challenge to cultivate. Milling gave us the opportunity to meet someone new, and allow ourselves to have fun and experience joy with one another!
We asked 3 fun engaging questions:
- What three items would you bring with you into a haunted forest?
- What are your favorite de-stressing activities to do during spring?
- What was a time you experience or witnessed a moment of joy in your community?
After our game, we hosted a door prize giveaway, where we gave away gift cards to Safeway, Macrina Bakery, and Bar Del Corso, along with 2 special cologne sets from Oscar De Le Renta. Congrats to all of our winners!
Next, we unveiled our Fresh Vision that we’ve been working diligently for the last year to cultivate and strategize around. To prepare for this unveiling, FEEST worked with the incredible Michael B Maine to film a new video, which features the FEEST Fam talking about our roots in food justice, and how we are adapting to youth needs as we continue to strengthen our organizing. Check out the video below, featuring music from local artist & community organizer, Rell Be Free!
We are honored to share our new vision for our future, the future of our community, and our schools, along with our new mission:
FEEST trains youth of color and working-class youth to build collective power and organize for transformative and systemic change in their schools.
We envision a society where working-class youth and families of color are thriving in vibrant, politically powerful communities.
After our video reveal, we heard from Marquiese, a FEEST Alum and multi-talented artist. He performed a song called Lonely, which focused on the feelings of being isolated during the COVID Lockdown, and how he missed being able to be with his friends. Afterward, two FEEST Student Organizers, Imani & Sambhavi gave speeches and shared about their experience with FEEST and the importance of organizing for better mental health resources in schools.
Here are some powerful quotes from both of their speeches:
When a death in the community would happen, we never address it as a school. We would get an alert at the start of class, but there was no offering of support other than an announcement. That’s not okay. We need more support than that. Mental Health is important to me because I’ve seen how its impacted close family and friends. I’ve seen how it impacted them, and not being able to understand how they felt, or being unable to help them get the help that they need is one of the biggest regrets of mine.
Before, I never had an idea of what mental health really was. Because we would have talks at school, and it would mostly be focused on Depression or Anxiety. That’s what surrounds these talks, it’s not about WHY it’s important, or HOW to take care of yourself, and your mental health. People just think about the negative stuff when it comes to mental health, I think that’s why it’s not talked about in the community.
After their speeches, longtime FEEST friend and supporter since our founding, David Bestock, led us through a paddle raise, where our community donated over $8,000 to support our mission and further our vision! After all of this, we ended the night by creating a word cloud based on how our new mission & vision made our community feel. Check it out below!
We are endlessly grateful for the support we’ve received from our community, youth, staff, and board, all of whom helped make this such a fun and powerful evening. Thank you to everyone who joined us to celebrate and support our fantastic youth, our work, our staff, and our board, and for being part of our movement to build youth power to organize for transformational change within our schools.
We share many of the feelings from our word cloud, and are hopeful, excited and prepared to take on our new mission, and make our vision for society and schools a reality!
Unable to attend Fresh Flavor, Fresh Vision! but still want to support FEEST? Donate Today!