This August FEEST opened our (virtual) doors to new and returning student organizers for our annual Summer Camp! Summer Camp is an opportunity for us to gather, build relationships, sharpen our analysis, and build our skills as community organizers. Our cohort is made up of students from Evergreen, Tyee, Rainier Beach, Chief Sealth, and Franklin High Schools. Read on for a brief recap on what students worked on this year during camp! 

Every day we lead with interactive games, namely a FEEST favorite, Milling! Milling is an opportunity to connect 1:1 with someone who you haven’t met or know very well. We usually ask questions that are lighthearted or related to the curriculum of the day. Some examples of our fave Qs are: 

  • If you had a superpower what would it be and why? 
  • If you could only eat one type of food for the rest of your life what would it be and why? 
  • Is a hotdog a sandwich? Why or why not? 
  • Who is someone who inspires you and why?

As we began building relationships, we started to share the history of FEEST, our roots in School Food, the shift we made during the pandemic, and ultimately the Mental Health Campaign. For new students joining this year, this was our opportunity to explain how we got here, why students want to focus on mental health and get collective buy-in that is deeply and widely felt by our organizers.

To do this, we knew it was important to identify our values as a group, and as individuals. We looked at the media, people we are inspired by, authors, and many more and dissected their values. FEEST staff then led students through an activity that guided them to learn more about themselves and what they are passionate about, and the values they hold dear, and why youth organizing is vital to win. 

“Youth right now are living through things and they are the ones that know solutions and what needs to change” – Amelie, Chief Sealth 11th grade, on why we need Youth-Led movements.

In addition to breaking down the mental health campaign, and getting collective buy-in, we invited Mari Shibuya and Heather Adams to join us during the two-week-long program. Mari led us through some powerful creative facilitation, grounding us in our own stories and histories, while Heather led mindfulness and breathing exercises with our students. Thank you so much, Mari and Heather for guiding our youth and supporting their growth, mental health, and organizing!

After a full two weeks of building with each other, we also had more lighthearted fun thanks to our friends at Milk Drunk! FEEST Students got the cool opportunity to create a new fun and tasty ice cream flavor that will be available for a limited time at Milk Drunk! Keep your eye out during Halloween weekend for the special edition Ube Ice Cream. A portion of the sales will go to FEEST and support our youth organizing program. 

We’re so excited to start this year off strong, and look forward to connecting with you all this fall!

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Youth are in the lead at FEEST because we know that change is not effective unless those most impacted by health inequities are the decision makers. Support youth leadership by donating today, OR sign up for our newsletter to get the latest from FEEST!

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