Each year, Equal Voice News features “America’s Next Leaders”, a series that profiles the recipients of the Marguerite Casey Foundation’s Sargent Shriver Youth Warriors Against Poverty Leadership Award. The award honors young people who, in the spirit of Sargent Shriver, have demonstrated a deep commitment to social justice and have transformed that commitment into effective action across an array of issues.The Marguerite Casey Foundation supports and promotes America’s Next Leaders in order to recognize their resolve and courage and to help them build a network that will foster their individual and collective work moving forward.
Equal Voice News is an online newspaper published by the Marguerite Casey Foundation that covers the intersection of policy and poverty, with a focus on the lives of families living at that intersection.
Equal Voice for Florida’s Families, which includes Farmworkers Self-Help, nominated Angel Mendez for the award. Here is a summary of his community contributions:
Angel, an undocumented youth, is active with Farmworkers Self-Help, working with the youth program, Teen Dream Team, and with Dreamer’s Teatro, an actors troupe.
He has become very involved in legislative work, helping to advocate for an in-state tuition bill for undocumented students and for expansion of the state’s KidCare program, which provides health insurance for youth.
Angel also has participated for two years in the Encampment for Citizenship program, which helped him expand his understanding of social justice organizing. Besides his work organizing with Farmworkers Self-Help, he won election as president of the Dade City Youth Council.