Upstanders Youth Leadership Council

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Upstanders YWCA Hanover’s Youth Leadership Council

Upstanders is facilitated by Deb Smith, Social/Racial Justice Coordinator, and retired Hanover Public School teacher in partnership with various teachers from local school districts. We have students from grades 7 and up, representing many of the local school districts. Participating in the program is free and with no commitment – kids participate in the events they have an interest in or are available for and the program does not build upon previous workshops.

Here are a few things the students have participated in:

* Martin Luther King Day at Guthrie Memorial Library, where they had mini-workshops on the life and work of MLK Jr., learned how they could be safe social/racial justice advocates, provided volunteer service at the library, and ended the day with open dialogue and questions.

* The students are very involved in the direction of the program and as a group decided to create care packages for the homeless that were then distributed at the Hanover Area Council of Churches

Upstanders are so many things – workshops, guest speakers, volunteerism, advocacy and so much more. The students have so many ideas, interests, and questions, regarding positive change – the program encourages all of them. We are very excited to be able to offer this program to the youth in our community as it underscores YWCA Hanover’s mission to eliminate racism, empower women, and promote peace, justice, freedom, and dignity for all.

The program is tailored towards youth and young adults, with that in mind, all events and material are carefully considered and approved. Once restrictions are lifted the group will once again reconvene here at YWCA Hanover, 23 West Chestnut Street, Hanover.

Should you have further questions or concerns, please feel free to Deb Smith, Social /Racial Justice Coordinator at or Rosemary Cintron, Program/Volunteer Coordinator at