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The voice of our community is powerful, and it’s within you.

 

Every day, for 35 years and counting, we watch community leaders stand up to special interests, polluters and prejudice and we watch them win. These leaders are the grandmothers, fathers, daughters and friends who live next door. They are just like you. They don’t have the time, money, experience or the formal expertise they should need, but they fight anyways.

 

With just their determination and a voice that speaks for their community, they build community power, diverting the flow of millions of dollars toward improving the lives of families, dismantling unjust power structures and building a healthier, more equitable Inland Valley for all.

The Center for Community Action and Environmental Justice (CCAEJ), is here to provide you with the tools and opportunities to share our community’s voice in a way that can affect real change.

We can build our community’s power as local government members. Here’s how: 

In 2017, we launched a new program to change the face of the Inland Valley’s government decision-makers — and the decisions they make, too.

Our Boards and Commissions Training empowers leaders in underrepresented Inland Valley communities to bring the voice of their community, and the perspective of equity, to local government appointments.

What are government boards and commissions?

Local government boards and commissions make important decisions for our communities, but are oftentimes lacking in community voice and representation. Our Boards & Commissions Training empowers community leaders and social justice advocates with not just a voice, but a vote at the table.

Our leaders bring the perspective of equity and their experiences in the community to local boards and commissions. Through diverse leadership, we create a government that is truly by the people, for the people, and representative of all communities in the Inland Valley.

Tiffaney Boyd, Boards and Commissions Training Fellow 2017 “No one knows what our community needs better than the local activists who live and work here. This training helps me take our community’s voice directly into government itself. Our families deserve leaders who understand our needs because they breathe the same air, live in the same neighborhoods and understand the experience of life with black and brown skin.”

Tiffaney Boyd, Boards and Commissions Training Fellow

“Representation matters. I’ve watched my neighborhood grow more beautiful and hopeful as leaders from our community worked hard to bring our voice to the table,” says Martinez. “Our community is filled with potential; to seize it, we must be in charge of our own fate. It’s time that the face of power become the face of our community.”

Emelia Martinez, Boards and Commissions Training Fellow

What does the Boards and Commission Training Program entail?

Our Boards & Commissions Training is a five-month program where Fellows gain integrated perspectives on relevant social justice issues, technical and advocacy skills, and networking.

Fellows learn from a variety of other community advocates and elected officials how to leverage their own experience, skills, and network to build influence and represent the voice of their community when appointed to a board or commission.

“Our Boards and Commissions Training Fellows already have impressive resumes from the leadership roles they’ve taken on in their neighborhoods. Our training gives them the tools they need to unlock the door to local government and bring the needs of their communities to the table.”

Josephine Young, CCAEJ Boards and Commissions Training Coordinator

Are You A Voice For Our Community?

Interested in applying to be the next Boards and Commissions Training Fellow? Ideal candidates are community leaders and advocates who are committed to social justice and are representative of and accountable to communities of color and other underrepresented communities.

Candidates are encouraged to be:

  • Experienced working across sectors
  • Knowledgeable about local/regional planning or policy
  • Knowledgeable of public policy processes
  • Professional, well-regarded among advocates and decision-makers.

Applicants must reside in San Bernardino County, Riverside County, or Coachella Valley and be committed to working on issues of equity and social justice. Contact Josephine at josephine.y@ccaej.org to learn more.

Meet the current Boards and Commissions Training Fellows.

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