In September 2015, AFSC youth advocates attended the Our Children Our Future Policy Summit.
Destiny, a student leader from Boone County, shared her story as a young person with big dreams and determination to further her education. She received a very warm response from the crowd, and spoke with many afterwards who were moved and inspired by her courage. In her words:
Danielle Gibson, a senior in AFSC's girls empowerment program at Tug Valley High School in Mingo County, knows a lot about the foster care system in West Virginia. She and her two younger siblings were removed from their home with their parents on June 20, 2013. Since then she has been in numerous different foster homes and has had to repeatedly change schools.
With help from Sandy Spring Friends School in Maryland, our youth leaders in Logan County, WV have planted seeds and seedlings in the community garden this spring. So far chard, beets, carrots, peas, herbs, and mustard greens are flourishing, with more planting coming soon!
"My name is Destiny Gallagher, I am 15 years old, and I have some important questions."
February 2014 – With her speech in hand Destiny Gallagher approached the podium and saw the floor and galleries in the House of Delegates chamber at West Virginia’s State Capitol filled with people and news cameras everywhere. As a fifteen year old from Boone County, she was the youngest person to speak at the public hearing on the chemical spill which affected 300,000 residents’ drinking water. Destiny had some tough questions for our legislators and spoke eloquently and powerfully about the dangerous impact of too much corporate power. Destiny said, “We deserve better.
A week after Christina spoke at a press conference at the State Capitol about the struggles she's faced growing up in poverty in Boone County, why she believes that it's important to speak up about abuse and injustice so people know that they are not alone, and how she looks forward to graduating and attending college, a massive chemical spill in Charleston meant Christina and 300,000 other West Virginians could not use their tap water, and forced Christina's school to close for over a week.
Join AFSC youth groups from Logan and Mingo counties, along with kids and families from across the state as we converge on the Capitol in Charleston to make our voices heard on issues ranging from physical activity in school, the Future Fund, and raising the minimum wage.
The newly formed girls leadership group at Tug Valley High School in Mingo County, who call themselves GLOW (Girls Leading Our World), wanted to address bullying and depression at their school and decided to lead a Mix It Up at Lunch Day. From planning, to implementation, and debriefing--these girls are leaders. The girls were congratulated by the principal over the intercom the next day and their fellow students kept asking what GLOW was up to next!
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 offices around the world. To see a complete list see the Where We Work page.