Often times you hear people say our youth are our future leaders and I really do not know what they mean when they say that - really? I strongly feel that our youth are our present leaders and as long as they are our present leaders they will be leaders - period.
In San Francisco our youth are looking forward to good jobs - some call them summer jobs. Hopefully these jobs will last a long time as least for the serious youth that really want jobs in these times of fiscal constraints and knowing well that our economy is not doing so very well.
I often talk to the youth and many of them want to earn their money. Some of them are prepared to volunteer part of the time if they can work some to make a little money. Again and again what we lack in San Francisco is a command center - a center where young people can go and get some quality information about jobs with quality help.
Further it would be nice if the youth could work on a resume to see how a resume can bring about opportunities. A center where young people can learn to speak and write well. A place where they can be creative and learn to use the computer to design, the camera to shoot nice pictures, work with their mind, soul, and physical being to create good stuff.
Often times the first job can mean a lot. Some youth in San Francisco would have been dead - would not be living if they had no job. A job can keep one out of gangs and in doing so save one's life. A job and a good job can bring a lot of opportunities in the life of any young person.
Some years ago for many years I had the opportunity to hire youth when I worked at the Presidio of San Francisco. Most of the departments did not like hiring the youth because of the responsibilities that went with hiring youth during summer. I loved it because I saw that it gave the youth opportunities and a chance to make sense of the future.
Private Industry Council has not been doing enough. They get millions of dollars but again and again we see more youth willing to work and not enough good jobs to go around. In San Francisco we have the talent and the best minds to make good stuff happen. This summer we hope that most youth get a nice job and that they contribute their talents to making San Francisco great.
Our youth are known for their creative music and dance and there should be opportunities given them to express themselves and also make money. The same with the camera and video and a host of other creative tools.
I remember working with the youth from the San Francisco Conservation Corps - Youth In Action and helping them create a video we called "HP on Fire". That was a hot video. All the youth that took part in this video are very proud to this day.
In certain parts of San Francisco there has been an increase of violence. Most of it by people who when they were young were not given a chance to experience life. I am shocked when I hear that some youth from our City have never been near the Golden Gate Bridge. Some have never been to the Presidio of San Francisco. There are some that have never been to the San Francisco Zoo.
How can these youth that stick to their turf and are afraid to move away to greener pastures ever learn to know, see and experience and know the difference? Summer is here and I hope those agencies that care for the youth do some good for the youth.
Summer is here and it is going to be a long summer. We have so many youth longing to be good and wanting to learn a lot. Now is the time for those who talk the talk to walk the walk.
Our City prides that we can deliver and this year I know there some great plans to do just that. I will watch, working hard, and report about some good projects. If anyone of you can help a youth leader - please do so - it is a joy to see a young person enjoy something, learn something, but most importantly love and enjoy life.