More than 40 young people from the United States and Colombia began their journey as the 2022 Peace Makers and Problem Solvers – PMPS cohort. These young people have worked for almost eight months developing leadership skills and learning about their communities through a structured curriculum. They connect once a month through Zoom and on a regular basis through WhatsApp building relationships, learning about each culture, and discussing ways they can make a positive and meaningful impact on their local communities.
PMPS Journey for Change is a movement to support these young people in their efforts to help their local communities by designing and implementing service-learning projects. This effort will be successful with your help, because leadership is not solitary work but the solidarity and collaborative determination of everyone helping each other. We kindly ask to join this leadership movement supporting youth-led social impact projects in rural Colombia and in vulnerable communities in the United States. The PMPS students are about to begin implementing their projects to address needs in their communities, but they still need funding to help keep their projects moving forward.
Below is the description of these thoughtful projects to be implemented by young people in Colombia and the United States. Your donations no matter how large or small will help to support these young people as they make a positive impact in our world. Donate to the PMPS Journey for Change
PMPS La Provincia Students Create a "Peace Challenge"
Gabriela, Kevin, and Indaly are PMPS mentors in Carepa, Antioquia, Colombia. They are leading a group of eight high school students at La Provincia school, teaching the students how to turn community challenges into opportunities! Although the community of Carepa is surrounded by hardships, the efforts of people like Kevin, Gabriela, and Indaly play a positive role in aiding peace-building for current and future generations.
The La Provincia PMPS group wishes to promote and develop healthier behaviors and positive relationships in both the school and with the children's families. To promote opportunities for growth and learning, the students hope to create peaceful spaces and experiences where their peers can feel safe and fulfilled. With this goal in mind, the La Provincia PMPS students have developed a project idea: the "Peace Challenge." The students plan to develop weekly recreational and experiential workshops with students from 6th to 9th grade, over a 2-month period, to promote peaceful behaviors at school. They also plan to include monthly workshops for parents and guardians to participate and learn valuable skills on how to make their homes into more peaceful spaces.
PMPS Students in Baltimore Help Schools in Need
Like their fellow PMPS peers in Colombia, the students from the Sheppard Pratt residential school and treatment center, in nearby Baltimore took a hard look at the community they live in to find ways to bring hope and spread kindness where it is needed most. Guided by their teacher, Ms. Shaw, the students identified two schools in the surrounding area where children lacked necessary resources to learn and thrive. PMPS students are now planning a social impact project to address the needs of these vulnerable schools in their community. By approaching the schools, the students are working on a plan to fundraise for each school's unique needs and providing materials to the children at these schools. They are showing that their community cares about them and is looking out for them!
PMPS El Cerro Students Build "The Path to Empathy"
Monica and Eledibey (PMPS Mentors) and their group of students at El Cerro School have rediscovered their community, a small rural village nearby Carepa, Antioquia. Their rural town, surrounded by banana fields and tropical fruit trees, has many assets to uncover and needs to address.
Monica and Eledibey helped the students explore the community, recognizing areas they could work in to create positive change. After taking time to share their thoughts, students decided to design a service project that combats the negative forces in their community by creating positive experiences.
Although the area has many resources, a constant threat of violence from drug and gang activity hangs heavy over the community. The presence of illegal armed actors puts youth in a vulnerable position and conditions them to remain disconnected out of fear and suspicion, making them more susceptible to the negative influences that surround them. The PMPS students believe that a culture of collective empathy could help bring their community together, teaching them to care and depend on one another and, ultimately, combat these violent forces.
To create this collective culture, the PMPS students at El Cerro School have designed a social service project, "The Path to Empathy" – creating an intervention to develop social-emotional skills for fellow students. The students plan to create a variety of innovative science experiments and interactive experiences to promote collaborative thinking and establish an empathetic, peaceful, and sustainable community culture. Together we can help these students to make their dreams of living in a peaceful community become a reality!
Please help the La Provincia students implement the "Peace Challenge" project, the El Cerro students carry out "The Path to Empathy" project, and the Sheppard Pratt students address the needs of fellow students in their community!
Together we can help these students to make their dreams of living in a peaceful community become a reality!
Join the #PMPSJourneyforChange campaign!
Help young change-makers in Colombia and in the U.S. create community impact by:
1) Donating to support their social impact projects by clicking this link: Donate to the PMPS Journey for Change. No contribution is too small!
2) Sharing and spreading the word about this journey for change on your social media. Use #PMPSJourneyforChange