Capstone Project (Open Access)
Bachelor of Arts (B.A.)
Health, Human Services and Public Policy
Collaborative Health and Human Services, concentration in Social Work
Throughout the duration of this project, the internship was conducted at The Epicenter in Salinas, CA. They are a drop in resource center for marginalized youth ages 16-24. The problem being addressed is youth having low community involvement. In broader terms, the issue at hand is youth not engaging in their community and gaining valuable mentorship/knowledge. The causes of having low community involvement for youth include poverty and not having the knowledge of the opportunities that exist in surrounding areas. The consequences that occur when youth do not get involved in their community, range from “brain drain,” which is where youth seek opportunities elsewhere, due to the lack of opportunities they believe are in their own city. Not being involved also has a consequence of leading to self doubt and believing that they can not make it elsewhere. To address this issue, a resource fair was planned to conduct a showcasing of possible opportunities that are available.
The resource fair was set to showcase possible art and education resources for youth. This way they could begin developing a connection face to face versus something that could be conducted online. The resource fair also allowed more incentives to be included, in order to reach more youth to participate the day of. Due to a worldwide pandemic, known as COVID-19, a shelter in place order was set in place. This made it where the original event was cancelled, however The Epicenter was left with a resource guide to eventually post on their website. It has been recommended to the center to eventually host their own resource fair while also including more partnerships with the building healthy communities campaign.
Alaniz, Lissa, "Engage, Encourage, & Empower: Shining Light on the Resources Available to Youth" (2020). Capstone Projects and Master's Theses. 768.