The first meeting of the Tempe Sister Cities Youth Group occurred on Sunday, September 14. Twenty-one members were in attendance, and seven were underclassmen from various local schools. The sophomores, juniors and seniors were inspired by guest speaker Councilman Corey Woods.
Mr. Woods shared his personal path into the world of politics and city government. He challenged the audience to take a self- inventory of skills, interests, passions, and consider how even at their current age, that each one can be making a difference in their school, their neighborhood, and their community. He invited them to set a goal for the coming year and to begin to make a difference and find a place for “their voice’.
The Councilman responded to questions that broadened the teens’ understanding of current issues in Tempe, different perspectives that are brought forward when working through issues, and the campaign process. Finally, he shared his sincere passion, commitment and enjoyment for the work that he is doing. Incidentally, the students learned that being a city councilman is not his full time job. It is his second full time job!
The evening concluded with the annual election of Youth Group officers. Congratulations to the new officers:
President: TJ L’Heureux
VP: Kristina Nedelkova
Secretary: Aashini Choksi
Finance: Avery Tomasi and Nicole Holly Social: Cole Richwine
Membership: Abby Kennedy and Amberly Ricks Publicity: Rachel Burkholder
Youth group members brought clothing and hygiene products to the meeting. Together with donations from the Tempe Sister Cities Governing Board members, the donations were delivered to the Tempe Union High School Resource Center for teenagers in need. Thank you to those of you who contributed to this clothing and hygiene products drive. In addition, the philanthropy focus for the month of September is on contributing to senior citizens. A small group will be reading poetry to seniors at Almcroft Senior Center and playing Bingo with a group of seniors at Westchester Center. Watch for more youth group news in every issue of the Sister Cities Newsletter – We are making a world of difference, right here in Tempe!