Happy Friday, have a great weekend!

Preparing youth for their future

One of the highlights of my year is the week I spend every July at the Kansas Youth Leadership Forum in Topeka. This is a program for high school juniors and seniors with disabilities which teaches them not only leadership skills, but introduces them to disability pride. For many of the youth who attend they have never heard anyone talk about being proud of who they are, including their disability, so this can help them change how they feel about themselves.

One of the best parts of this year’s forum was the debate that was held in the senate chambers at the state capital. The topic was bullying at school and after an hour and a half of debate, what the delegates realized was that getting a bill through the legislature could be really difficult. No one thinks bullying is ok, but the bill still was sent back to committee and did not pass.

There were many other things that happened during the week and by Saturday, 18 young people with disabilities met new friends, and realized that they could have a future if they follow their dreams. This year’s forum is over, but it will be so exciting to watch as this group of delegates live the lives that they planned.

-Roger F.

For more information about KYLF: https://www.kyea.org/ksylf.php