West Oakland Celebrates the Opening of a Youth Center, Designed by Teens
Students at McClymonds High School, a community school in Oakland, celebrated the opening of their new Youth and Family Center, which features a dance room, a computer lab, and kitchen – designed with their input in mind.
The project was first imagined about 10 years ago and finally came together with a federal grant, support from the offices of U.S. Rep. Barbara Lee and Alameda County Supervisor Keith Carson. A group of local agencies and organizations, such as the San Francisco Foundation, the Alameda County Health Care Services Agency and the Oakland Fund for Children and Youth also provided for funding for the project.
McClymonds Principal, Kevin Taylor said they think of the center as the hub of West Oakland where they "want to provide as many services…to make families be successful." He envisions parents using the center as a place to look for jobs and take classes.
Dr. Barbara Staggers, director of adolescent medicine at Children's Hospital Oakland, said such spaces have proved to help teenagers become more resilient in the face of challenges- and to make choices that will allow them to lead longer, healthier lives.