DFOY Participants Featured On Good Morning America

good morning america participant standing

If you are a fan of Good Morning America or happened to tune in on August 7th, you probably saw Directions For Our Youth students highlighted by co-host Michael Strahan as he discussed WE Day with pop star Meghan Trainor.

“Good Morning America was an amazing opportunity to interact with other people who are making a big difference in the world; such as the WE organization and Meghan Trainor.” – Kailani G, M.S. 180 Student

For over three years Directions For Our Youth has partnered with WE and their annual WE Day UN celebration, which was held at the Barclays Center on September 25th. DFOY’s partnership with WE Charities has encouraged DFOY program participants from M.S. 180 to think globally and experience life beyond their neighborhood bubble. WE campaigns provide an authentic lens into the impact youth can make — both now and in the future.

“GMA was an incredible experience because after all of the hard work that we did — we got a lot of recognition!” – Ciara G, M.S. 180 Student

Through WE Walk For Water, DFOY participants were introduced to students in Haiti who lacked access to clean drinking water and other necessities commonly taken for granted. WE campaigns reveal relatable stories of youth from around the world, many of whom share similar experiences with DFOY participants, creating change and tackling global issues that peers their age face. Inspired by the obstacles students in Haiti had to overcome on a daily basis, DFOY participants from M.S. 180, along with program leadership, met with school leadership to take action. A school-wide campaign to raise funds from recycling bottles, along with awareness walks, and even a feature article in the neighborhood newspaper, helped DFOY raise over $1,000 for the school in Haiti.

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Program Director Sahquana Crawley takes a selfie with DFOY participants at WE Day UN 2019

Additionally Carolyn Encarnacion, Directions For Our Youth Program Director at M.S. 180, has noticed the impact of DFOY’s partnership with WE throughout the M.S. 180 program:

“Since our partnership with WE first began over 3 years ago, I have noticed an identifiable difference in our participant’s leadership skills. Through our Youth Council, students have used their voice to share what is important to them and improve our programs. I have noticed a similar shift with our parents – their participation in our efforts for students in Haiti has changed the way they view DFOY programs, and as a result, we have seen increased parent engagement during other aspects of our programming. Furthermore, as a leader and the Program Director, our partnership with WE is seamless because their service-learning curriculum involves our staff, participants, and families. We also get a ton of support from Michaela Henley at WE.” – Carolyn Encarnacion, Program Director– DFOY @ M.S. 180
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DFOY participants at M.S. 180 advocate for clean water

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