The Smart Trips Youth Initiative is a diverse group of youth brought on our staff to work on transportation issues in their neighborhood. The first group of this ongoing project consists of four members; Keleenah, J’tionna, Dalicia and Chris.
These four youth came from our work with the Frogtown Crew, who focused on sustainable transportation, social justice, and community engagement in their own neighborhood. The Frogtown Crew ended in December 2015 but not after leaving an impressive mark on the Frogtown community with numerous block parties, creative bike racks, adventurous bike rides and a ground breaking mural! The Youth Initiative was created to continue the work of Frogtown Crew with a slightly different approach – continuing to build on their previous work and existing relationships in Frogtown through advocacy and outreach while bringing their knowledge of youth development and community outreach to mentor youth in other St. Paul neighborhoods.
Youth Initiative’s long term goal is to bring the community together through fun events to talk about sustainable transportation, social justice and environmental justice in a safe environment. They hope to create more youth leaders and become the change they hope to see. With the information they gather, they plan to implement change in communities around St. Paul and show the world the strength people have when they work for a change.
In 2016, the Youth Initiative worked on engaging the Frogtown Community on two specific topics.
Better Bus Stops Project: Youth Initiative worked with Metro Transit to collect information about Metro Transit buses, bus stops and the Light Rail in Frogtown. They’ve gathered over 150 surveys by going out into the community to talk to residents about what they need to make their experiences and how they use Metro Transit better. Learn more about the Better Bus Stops project.
Frogtown Small Area Plan: The Small Area Plan is a ten year proposal of how Frogtown wants the money they receive from the city, to be implemented into the neighborhood. The youth gathered information from the community in order to paint the picture for the plans and future of Frogtown in many ways. Learn more about the Frogtown Small Area Plan.
In 2016, the Youth Initiative:
- Hosted a Frogtown Neighborhood Association Forum to talk about the future of Frogtown and what goes into creating a small area plan.
- Led a bike ride to the Frogtown Neighborhood Association’s Annual event to connect with residents on biking and walking issues in their neighborhood.
- Hosted the Frogtown Summer Jump Up! event to get community members out and together while getting important input on safety, housing and transportation issues. This was specifically targeted to, but not limited to, youth.
- Like the Youth Initiative on Facebook. more….
- See what has been happening in Frogtown since 2012 with the Frogtown Crew. more….
- Get to know the Youth Initiative a little better. more….
- Hear what riding a bike means to J’Tionna, Keleenah and Chris in their own words. more….
- Find out what the Youth Initiative had to say about getting something like this started in your neighborhood at the 2016 Youth Bike Summit. more….