Tuesday, August 28, 2012

InnerCity Struggle's 9th Annual Awards Dinner Invitation

 InnerCity Struggle cordially invites you to help sponsor InnerCity Struggle’s 9th Annual Awards Dinner. This year’s event will take place Wednesday, October 3rd, 2012 at The Center at Cathedral Plaza in Downtown Los Angeles. The event is entitled “18 Years of Unifying the Eastside,” which will highlight our 18 year history of organizing youth, families and community residents in achieving policy changes in areas of college access, violence prevention and increasing after-school programs for local youth. We are honored to invite you to participate at this momentous anniversary, where hundreds of our supporters, community, labor and business leaders will come together to celebrate the stellar work of InnerCity Struggle’s youth and families, as well as our evening’s dinner honorees.  
This year's dinner will recognize the accomplishments and contributions of outstanding individuals that are leading the progressive fight to improve the quality of life on the Eastside and throughout the nation. The honorees include the following: 
  • Dream Team LA, a grassroots organization that was pivotal in advocating for the California DREAM Act and serves to empower the undocumented youth community. 

  • Assembly member Ricardo Lara, who was raised in East Los Angeles and worked on the passage of the landmark Assembly Bill (AB) 540, making college education more affordable for immigrant students.

  • Kafi D. Blumenfield, the President and CEO of the Liberty Hill Foundation, one of the nation's most admired social change foundations that focuses on an array of issues in Los Angeles including civic engagement, environmental justice, human rights and housing.

Please consider purchasing an ad space, a dinner ticket or making a contribution. Your support will enable us to further ICS’s long-term work towards educational equity; in addition, all proceeds from this year’s dinner are critical to developing and supporting the next generation of community leaders that are actively advocating for improved educational opportunities for all students in Eastside schools. Would you be able to purchase a dinner ticket and/or make a contribution?
We are confident that with your participation, we can reach this year’s fundraising goal of $200,000! 
Please feel free to contact Irene Rocha, United Students Site Organizer, directly at (323) 780-7605 Ext. 118 or via email at Irene@innercitystruggle.org.
InnerCity  Struggle  (ICS)  promotes  safe,  healthy  and  nonviolent  communities by  organizing  youth  and  families  in  Boyle  Heights, unincorporated  East  Los Angeles,  El Sereno and  Lincoln  Heights  to  work  toward  economic,  social  and  educational  justice. 

InnerCity Struggle is working to improve the quality of education in the four East Los Angeles communities (Boyle Heights, unincorporated East LA, El Sereno and Lincoln Heights) by engaging high school and middle school students and parents in developing leadership skills to voice concerns, raise community awareness and promote solutions.

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InnerCity Struggle has worked with youth and community residents since 1994. InnerCity Struggle involves youth, families and community members who work together for change in their communities.  InnerCity Struggle provides positive after-school programs for students to become involved in supporting our schools.  InnerCity Struggle has empowered students to reach their family’s dream of college.  The work of InnerCity Struggle demonstrates that youth and parents working together are a powerful force for improving their communities and making real change.
Program Description:
InnerCity Struggle works with high school students through United Students campus clubs at Roosevelt, Garfield, Wilson and Lincoln high schools. These clubs demand equitable opportunities and educational justice to ensure that all students graduate and attend college. In addition, InnerCity Struggle has a parent component called Familias Unidas that builds the power of parents and families to fight for equitable opportunities and quality education for both all children and youth. InnerCity Struggle's work is grounded in a theory of change that views real and lasting change occurring as a result of mass numbers of youth and families organizing at a grassroots level.
InnerCity Struggle also engages thousands of Eastside voters during critical election cycles to ensure they have all the information to make educated decisions at the ballot box.  We have also registered thousands of new voters and trained community residents to engage in Get-Out-The-Vote efforts.
Other Recent ICS Accomplishments:
  • Breakfast In the Classroom – ICS partnered with School Board President Monica Garcia, SEIU Local 99, and the LA Fund for Education to sponsor an LAUSD resolution to expand the Breakfast In the Classroom program to 100 schools next academic year and District-wide within 5 years.  Breakfast In the Classroom will provide students with greater access to beginning their day with a healthy meal during their 1st period of school to ensure a greater amount of students eat breakfast on a daily basis.
  • ETHS Wellness Center Inauguration as part of the Community Schools Campaign, which attempts to leverage community partnerships to provide necessary resources to students at Esteban E. Torres High School, ICS was able to secure 4 individual community health clinics to provide a total of 8 health providers to be available for students at ETHS.  Students will now have support on issues and conditions of Mental Health, Physical Health and Reproductive Health. To inaugurate the Wellness Center, ICS organized a Health Assembly with students from ETHS and special guests Congressman Esteban Torres (Ret.) and School Board President Monica Garcia.
  • Supporting A-G with the implementation of the A-G Resolution at stake, close to 40 staff, parents and youth of InnerCity Struggle mobilized to the May 8th School Board meeting to voice support for the implementation of the A-G Life Prep Resolution.  Several speakers, including parent leader Sra. Leon, US Alumni and current staff member Armando Sanchez, and Executive Director Maria Brenes spoke in front of the School Board to remind them of the commitment they made to students and parents 7 years ago and the need to move the A-G resolution forward.
  • Restorative Justice ICS staff has worked closely with the lead Roosevelt Principal in charge of the School-wide Discipline Committee to develop policy recommendations to discuss with the larger School-wide Discipline committee. Members include teachers, administrators, PLAS staff, students and parents. ICS has consistently trained and mobilized 2-3 parents and 3-5 students to actively participate in the monthly School-wide Discipline Committee. Soon after the Committee began to convene, United Students at Roosevelt won agreement for implementation of a School-Wide Positive Behavior Support Model which aims to treat disciplinary measures as individual cases of Restorative Justice.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012



By Azaan Kamau

Editors, Ifalade Ta’Shia Asanti and Azaan Kamau are proud to announce one of the most highly
anticipated anthologies of the decade. Letters to My Bully published by Glover Lane Press will
arrive to bookstores and on-line markets on August 15, 2012.

Why a Letter to My Bully?

Every day in America, 160,000 students miss school due to bullying. According to reports by
the Secret Service, two-thirds of school shootings are motivated by bullying. A whopping 43%
of middle school children avoid the bathroom and locker rooms at all costs due to certainty of
being bullied. And finally, the number one reason for suicides among youth ages 11-16 is

Glover Lane Press’ historical anthology, Letters to My Bully, not only gives victims of bullying
an outlet to express the impact of bullying in their lives, contributors speak on solutions to the
problem and offer healing advice to survivors. Letters to My Bully is a thought-provoking
collection of letters, poetry and essays written by youth, women, men, seniors and celebrities that
will change the way this country views survivors forever.

“As a survivor of bullying, I wanted to do a project that would not only help victims heal but
would help to educate the masses on how serious this issue is. I define bullying as abuse,
mistreatment, torment and harassment by peers, classmates, neighbors, the congregation,
siblings, parents, boyfriend, your spouse, etc. This is an issue that America must make a priority
as it relates to social justice and peace movements.” Says Glover Lane Press publisher, Azaan
Co-editor, Ifalade Ta’Shia Asanti says, “Letters to My Bully is an excellent tool for ministers,
teachers, community leaders, parents, teens and youth to educate those around them about the
dangers of bullying. Until everybody, everywhere is addressing this issue in some form, it will
continue to plague our great nation.” Says Ifalade.

Letters to My Bully includes contributions by Actor, Robert LaSardo and Huffington Post writer,
Kergan Edwards-Stout, as well as more than a dozen other best-selling, nationally celebrated
writers. There are also pieces written by child survivors and senior citizens.

Letters to My Bully is proud to be supported by national Peace Partners who have committed to
ensuring the message of this anthology will reach the masses.

Letters to My Bully edited by Ifalade Ta’Shia Asanti, Azaan Kamau and published by Glover
Lane Press will be released by August 15, 2012.

Purchase Letters to My Bully at:
http://amazon.com (uploads on Kindle)
Please visit http://www.gloverlanepress.webs.com for more information.

Become a Peace Partner by inviting the editors and select authors from Letters to My Bully to
your venue for a community dialogue, book signing or Peace Party.