“Why do you like to see someone you love laying there lifeless?,” is one of the many questions that a sixth grade student at Batiste Cultural Arts Academy(BCAA) in New Orleans asks her peers during her poem “Stop the Killing and Give it a Rest.” Around sixteen other students also performed poems like this to an audience of about 63 of their peers during the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) New Orleans’ Poetry for Peace night held in partnership with City Year New Orleans on Feb. 24, 2011.
“Racism is ignorance and it’s been going around for a long time. If we don’t so anything about it now, it will continue to be around for generations. We have to deal with it.” Quote from youth.
What is racism? What are our human rights, and how do we create an environment in which all rights are respected. These are some of the concepts the American Friends Service Committee, (AFSC) Racial Justice Through Human Rights youth group have been learning about and reflecting on.
As the historic debate over federal spending began in Washington, young winners of the “If I Had A Trillion” video contest descended on Capitol Hill, challenging lawmakers to address the bloated defense spending that imperils their schools, communities, and futures.
Derrick Crowe of the Brave New Foundation praises the young participants of "If I Had a Trillion" video contest, co-sponsored by AFSC and the National Priorities Project. They were asked how they would have spent the $1 Trillion spend on the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and on Feb. 16, two winners will show their answers on Capitol Hill.
In June of 2010 AFSC help three young people testify at a congressional briefing entitled Immigrant Detention and Family Separation: Not a Family Value. In the packed house were 17 congressional staffers and 13 representatives of advocacy organizations. Co-sponsors included Amnesty International, Families for Freedom, the Interfaith Immigration Coalition, the New Sanctuary Movement of New York and Wind of the Spirit.
Matching law students with GIs wanting out of the military may not seem a natural fit. But law students volunteering with AFSC’s San Francisco GI Rights hotline are finding the experience richly rewarding. “To start ending some of the hurt for people: that’s what I like about it,” says Jason Thomas, a second year student at University of California Hastings.
AFSC is a Quaker organization devoted to service, development, and peace programs throughout the world. Our work is based on the belief in the worth of every person, and faith in the power of love to overcome violence and injustice. Learn more
Where we work
AFSC has office around the world. To see a complete list see the Where We Work page.