This weekend Jomaile Holland is flying to Anaheim, Calif., but Disneyland isn't what's attracting her; Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck are going to have to take a backseat. The sophomore is representing the state of Ohio at the National Youth Summit on Preventing Violence on Feb. 15-18, where she and fellow youth ambassadors are developing crime prevention policy recommendations that will go to the president of the United States, as well as the vice president, cabinet members, members of Congress and governors.
Hosted by the National Crime Prevention Council, which is best known for McGruff the Crime Dog and the "Take A Bite Out Of Crime" campaign, the four-day summit combines hands-on learning with action. Participants in the conference attend training sessions, go on an off-site educational field trip, and voice their ideas for reducing crime and violence though roundtable discussions.
"Providing a vehicle for youth to voice their ideas on reducing violence in America is essential to making young people part of the solution," says Jack Calhoun, president and CEO of the council. "The National Youth Summit is that vehicle."
"The joy that I receive when reuniting with my fellow ambassadors is remarkable," says Holland. "We are so united toward one goal, assisting our youth. With that, we can make a difference. The summit will help me to see the real target areas that we need to reach out to, primarily our youth."