Roundtable for African Youth in New York City: it was a time to discuss issues, answer questions, and socialize

“Your community, your voice: roundtable for African youth in New York City,” was the topic panelists and youth “dive in” in December 19, 2018 in Harlem to shed light on issues African immigrants specifically the youth may face in their journey in the Apple City.

This was an initiative of the New York City Commission on Human Rights. Christelle N. Onwu the Lead Advisor for African Communities/ EEO Recruitment Strategist, NYC Commission on Human Rights, Introduced the panelists before discussions began.

There were many tables in the room and a small group of people gathered around each table to identify issues, which were debated then.

Issues were diagnosticated through questions such as “what some challenges are faced by immigrant New Yorkers?” “what role can city government play in increasing youth engagement?” “Do you believe youth and young adults feel empowered to report discrimination?” In addition to that there was time to ask questions.

Discrimination, housing, employment, language barriers, poor information, navigating public transit, disinformation, bullying, and access to services were some issues that were discussed.

 It was also an opportunity to socialize. “this one of the raisons we organized this event,” said Mrs. Onwu, adding she is “happy of the standing.”

Emily Gallagher the Community Affairs Manager, HI – NYC and Assistant director of community affairs, Hi – USA, Marissa A. L. Jackson the deputy commissioner, NYC commission on human rights, Alphonso ( Chris) Smith the youth initiatives lead advisor NYC commission on human rights, Famod Konneh the Bronx Borough director/ African liaison, Mayor’s office of community affairs unit, Lauren Elfant the Chief of Staff/EEO officer, NYC  commission on human rights, Sarah Whitney the deputy director of strategic partnerships, youth services, NYC department of youth and community development, May Malik the deputy commissioner for external affairs, mayor’s office of immigrant affairs, Anne Brewer the senior advisor for policy and research, Mayor’s public engagement unit, were panelists who make the beauty and the greatness of the event.

“Incredible impact,” said Famod Konneh talking about the impact the event has had on the participants. “The outcome was great,” he said.

“We plan to do more next year,” Mrs. Onwu said.

Bazona Barnabe Bado



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