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Teen at a previous year's #RISE Youth Summit. Photo: Youth Service, Inc.  
Teen at a previous year's #RISE Youth Summit. Photo: Youth Service, Inc.  

Empowering local teens at the first-ever Rise and Dream Philly Teen Conference

The conference will aim to help local teenagers build a sense of identity and help them be better prepared to find solutions to the daily issues they encounter…

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Two prominent organizations are joining forces to empower Philadelphia teens to find themselves and combat the problems they may face.

Youth Service Inc., a non-profit organization that provides support services to at-risk Philadelphia teens, is collaborating with The Advocacy Institute, a non-profit, tax-exempt organization dedicated to the development of products, projects and services that work to improve the lives of people with disabilities, to host the first-ever Rise & Dream Philly Teen Conference.

This collaboration is in connection with YSI’s 17th annual “I Can Dream” Teen Conference and the Advocacy Institute’s 4th annual #RISE Youth Summit.

Keevon Johnson, currently the advocacy institute program manager at The Advocacy Institute, and formerly the program supervisor at Youth Service Inc., saw some similarities in these two conferences and decided it would be a good idea to work together bringing more youth and supporters to one event.

The conference’s theme is: “Find Yourself, Be Yourself”.

This is a call to action for Philadelphia teens to feel comfortable with themselves and rise above the adverse conditions that surround them while working towards their goals and dreams.

Gwen Bailey, executive director of Youth Service Inc., said the theme was created by a youth member of the conference planning committee.

“She felt that youth spend energy and time on trying to be accepted by others and she wanted an emphasis on being yourself and loving who you are,” said Bailey. “She wants youth to know who they are, love who they are and use that as their platform to grow into fantastic adults.”

The conference will also feature a panel of experts and workshops. 

“The workshops are not typical for those at conferences,” Bailey said.

The teens will have an opportunity to break into small groups and put together their creative expressions of “Find Yourself, Be Yourself, and to be coached by prominent individuals.

Headliners of the conference include social media powerhouse, Wallo267, Philadelphia-based dance organization Project Positive, and soulful singer, lyricist and songwriter ÅrÄmØ.

The Rise & Dream Philly Teen Conference will take place on Sat. May 18, 2019 at the Howard Gittis Student Center at Temple University from 9am to 3pm.

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