Central Valley

What the FAX? BMoC’s Fight to Improve Fresno’s Bus System

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YLI is My Story

Ever ride the bus? When you take the Fresno Area Express (FAX), a would-be 20-minute car ride can easily turn into a 2 ½ journey depending on the bus route you take. Riders can wait up to an hour along certain routes, and the frequent stops all add up. Turns out, there’s nothing “Express” about … Continued

When We Rise Up As One, WE WIN: MErcedTOO Campaign Scores Major Policy Win Against Sexual Harassment

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Campaign Victories

Last Wednesday, the Merced Girls & Womyn of Color (GWoC) stood up against sexual harassment in their schools — and WON. The June 13th Merced Union High School District (MUHSD) Board meeting was filled to capacity. Students and other community members wore t-shirts and carried signs. Brave young leaders stood up before the Board, their … Continued

YLI’s 120th Policy Win Wipes Juvenile Fees from the Books

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Campaign Victories

When a critical new law is passed, we celebrate. There’s that flood of relief, that flush of jubilation, punctuated by cheers, tears, and hugs all around. Those of us who have spent months, years, decades fighting for change – taking surveys, holding community meetings, meeting with decision-makers, staging rallies, collecting signatures and endorsement letters, and … Continued

YLI’s 119th Policy Win Means Jobs for Fresno Youth

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Campaign Victories

“There is no way to get out if there is nothing to do. That was my personal connection, the increasing gang violence, and what it has done to my community….Youth want to work, and they need work.” –Jaylin White, Fresno Youth Commission Youth unemployment means something different depending on where you are. In affluent communities, … Continued

Begin at the Beginning: New Merced Office Gears up to Listen and Learn

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Our History

On Wednesday, February 28th, YLI will be expanding our offices for the first time in 14 years! This expansion celebrates the incredible work of YLI’s youth, communities, and staff over our 27 years to include youth voice in local decision-making.  The strength of our youth leadership programs in the San Francisco Bay Area and Fresno County have paved … Continued

Trump Freezes Critical Resource for Mental Illness and Substance-Abuse

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YLI is My Story

Where do community health professionals go to find effective interventions for preventing and treating mental illness and substance-use disorders? The National Registry of Evidence-based Programs and Practices, a database containing hundreds of scientifically-proven therapies, is the go-to for mental health and addiction specialists. But new additions to this invaluable resource have been blocked indefinitely by … Continued

Filling in the Blanks: Youth Spotlight from 2016-2017

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YLI is My Story

In high school, lecture notes were projected onto a screen, and dotted with blanks for the students to fill in. “It was as though we couldn’t write the notes ourselves,” reflected Nailea Lazarit, who is now a freshman at Fresno State University. She believes that young people’s sense of competence and ability is deeply shaped … Continued