By Gino Pastori-Ng

Oakland is internationally renowned for its creativity and innovation, and this legacy will continue to expand thanks to a collaborative program launching this fall. The Impact Youth HUB is the brainchild of Youth SEED, United Roots and Impact HUB Oakland.

Based on the co-working space that Impact HUB Oakland has successfully launched at its 2323 Broadway location, Youth SEED and United Roots have developed a similar model that will serve as a pipeline for youth in the community to participate in social impact and innovation.

The first phase in the development of this partnership is the Youth HUB Fellowship program, a year-long experience where youth ages 16-24 will participate in social entrepreneurship training, combined with mentoring, seed funding, and access to co-working space.

This fall, Youth Impact HUB is hosting a monthly cultural event series leading up to the launch of the Youth HUB Fellowship Program. The series begins September 24 with a cultural ceremony of elder storytelling, traditional music and a panel of youth using art and culture for social change.

In the following months, Youth Impact HUB will host a Black and Brown Unity film festival, a Youth-Made art exhibit and marketplace, and a Winter Solstice celebration highlighting legacies of innovation and cross-cultural collaboration from around the globe. The series aims to inspire youth to draw on their cultural heritage for their entrepreneurship and creative expression and will set the foundation for the programming that will be hosted at the Youth Impact HUB in the years to come.

The Youth HUB Opening Ceremony is the first event in the series and will showcase local indigenous artists, youth social entrepreneurs and community elders. Ernesto Olmos and Gera Marin will be performing Native American music, young entrepreneurs from the DetermiNation program will be showcasing their Media Group, and local elders Belvie Rooks, Dedan Gils and Reverend E will be talking about the importance of connecting youth to culture and sustainable practices.

The doors open from 5:30 p.m. with light refreshments, and the program will be from 6-8 p.m. at 2781 Telegraph Avenue in Oakland. RSVP at: http://www.eventbrite.com/e/youth-hub-opening-ceremony-tickets-12877140875

Gino Pastori-Ng is a proud Oakland native who supports youth-led innovation for a more equitable world as co-founder and co-director of both Youth SEED and Youth Impact HUB Oakland.

Editor’s Note: This piece reflects an individual opinion and is not a reported story from Oakland Local. Oakland Local invites community residents to share their views about events and issues in Oakland.
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