NAPA VALLEY LIFE MAGAZINE
A group of 70-plus Napa teens are proving that collectively they can make a difference in their community. The teens are part of group from On the Move and Leadership Academy, LAYLA - Leadership Academy Youth Leaders in Action under the direction of Leslie Medine.
For the past three years, the groups had a dream to create a multi-cultural plaza and neighborhood center and it appears that dream is on the road to becoming a reality. After the first Town Hall meeting in April, 2008, they received the support in theory from neighbors in the McPherson neighborhood to explore the possibility of the center being built at O'Brien Park off Pueblo Avenue.
Now professionals have stepped forward to assist the teens with architectural and landscape design. At a recent City Council meeting, the teens impressed council members with their plan and what they have accomplished so far. Councilmen Jim Krider and Mark VanGorder praised the teens and said they were making history.
Medine said the kids want to be a role model to other neighborhoods on what can get done when a group of people work together. She also said young people can get things done because they don't have the experience of being told "no." Another unique aspect of the project is it will be the first democracy zone in the country where everyone, young and old, gets to vote on the project. The next step for group is to work with state architect because the land is on park property.