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What is H.O.L.L.A!’s Healing Justice Movement?

H.O.L.L.A! Healing Justice Movement Logo

The grassroots leadership of youth of color from poor and working class urban communities are rarely seriously engaged or included in citywide development of policy, law, and institutions that have serious consequences for our lives and communities. We believe the leadership of youth of color must be included in these conversation! We want our Healing Justice movement to remedy that. We are invested in creating vulnerable spaces for youth of color to heal, providing a platform to amplify youth voice. We created our Community Health Assessment to better understand how laws, policies, and institutions cause harm in our lives. We created our Community Health Assessment to better understand the healing needs, practices and desires of youth of color living through systemic oppression. We want our Community Health Assessment and movement process to be the fuel to bridge relationships that move forward human and healing based policies and practices to help restore our communities. We envision this happening through a Four Phase process: Healing Justice Community Health Assessment, Workshops/Experiences, Written/Multimedia reports/experiences, and stakeholder briefings with  formerly and currently incarcerated people, policymakers, politicians, street corners, community centers, schools, living rooms, police, and government officials to transform their policy development and practices.

First, The Youth Organizing Collective will administer our Healing Justice Youth Community Health Assessment Survey to connect with youth in Bed Stuy and throughout New York City. We will have a virtual web-based survey to distribute in mass. We will deliver paper surveys to local youth of color based organizations. We will conduct short street survey/interviews outside of public transportation, schools, local neighborhoods and community centers. Concurrently, we will be convening Healing Justice workshops/experiences with twenty-thirty youth of color based organizations across the New York Metropolitan Area City. This will be directed by strategic out-reach plan. We have three options to engage with young people in the Greater New York City Metropolitan Area. We envision our experience together lasting various time durations. They include for three hours, two hours and one hour for Healing Justice workshops and surveying throughout the city. These workshops/experiences ideally would range from 5-40 participants. Over the next six months we plan on having local and large citywide events to promote the Healing Justice Movement. We will use these events to report back our learned lessons, struggles and plans for next steps. Our workshops will not only increase our community outreach, political education and self reflection but they will ensure that we have an accurate and comprehensive assessment youths’ opinions. By engaging in deep Community listening, healing and documentation, we will be better informed for our citywide report backs and movement building. Second and Third, we want to share everything we learn/gathered from our Healing Justice Youth Community Health Assessment Survey, organizing, and experience on our organizational website. And through citywide events and written/multimedia reports/experiences. Fourth, we will partner with the Center for NuLeadership on Urban Solutions to ensure our plans for healing and justice will get into the hands of policymakers, politicians, police, and government officials to inform their development of policy, law and institutions. The Center will also ensure our report back on healing and justice is communicated and expressed back to the communities and individuals most directly impacted by the laws, policies, practices and systems of oppression.

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Many people are interested in changing our communities but so few will ask for young people’s suggestions. We want to facilitate this exchange and empower youth in Brooklyn and throughout New York City to organize. We know from our own personal experiences that in order to create a lasting and sustainable movement, healing is the first necessary step. Outside of our participation in H.O.L.L.A!, we do not have an outlet to discuss our healing and trauma. Feeling safe enough to be vulnerable and share how we are processing how power and privilege affects our lives is both a critical and necessary part of analysis for creating any meaningful interventions. Consequently, we are fully committed to creating opportunities for youth to be able to heal and engage in deep critical self reflection. After this period of transformation, we know that they will be even better suited to fully commit to organize for liberation. We are stronger together and united we will work together to how policy makers, government officials, schools, police accountable.

We would love for you and others to join us in developing this movement. Taking our Community Health Assessment is an easy first step. We promise that everything you share in the assessment will be confidential. We promise that everything you tell us will be honored and treated with respect, love and care. We will share back everything we learn/gathered from this survey on our organizational website, through city-wide events and written reports. We would like you to be a part of building this with us. If you would like to be more involved with assisting us in developing this Healing Justice Movement, please leave us your name and the best way to contact you on the last page of the survey. It will take only about 15 minutes to complete Community Health Assessment. Thanks for taking time out your day, much love and respect.