This Saturday, Emerging Leaders volunteered at one of four non-profits and initiatives throughout San Francisco, giving back to the local community and learning more about Bay Area life and culture. They chose from a range of volunteer experiences, from gardening to troubleshooting laptops to advocating for women and children in need:
Community Technology Network (CTN) believes that internet accessibility is a human right and that people without basic computer skills are at risk of social and economic disadvantage and disempowerment. Their mission is to unite the local community to transform lives through digital literacy training for low income communities and the elderly. At CTN, Emerging Leaders sat down with seniors who had questions about their devices, helping them navigate their laptops, phones and tablets. Emerging Leaders Zevar and Yulduz even found a fellow Russian speaker, helping him learn more about his laptop.
Alemany Farm is the largest farm in San Francisco, encouraging visitors to learn where their food comes from, pitch in on gardening projects and walk home with fresh and free produce. Through workshops on food security, gardening and growing food, they aim to increase ecological knowledge and “sow the seeds for economic and environmental justice.” Emerging Leaders visited on the day of the farm’s Fall Harvest Festival and, together with local volunteers, helped plant vegetables, fertilize the soil and pull weeds. Volunteers also helped at the face painting station, made flower crowns and were treated to a live folk band at the group potluck that followed their volunteer work.
La Casa de las Madres offers comprehensive services to women, teens and children exposed to and at risk of abuse. The center–available to women of any age 24 hours a day, 365 days a year–gives survivors tools and resources that can transform their lives and break the cycle of domestic violence. Through community education, La Casa de las Madres seeks to prevent future violence and redefine public perceptions about domestic violence. Each woman arriving at the center receives a free journal, and Emerging Leaders spent the day decorating and personalizing the journals with bright colors and drawings to make center visitors feel welcome.
The San Francisco Botanical Garden occupies 55 acres of San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park, featuring 8,500 species of plants from around the world. With a mission to provide educational programs and a commitment to conservation, the garden offers visitors an urban sanctuary of landscaped gardens and open spaces. On Saturday, Emerging Leaders planted seeds, landscaped and learned about local species.
Emerging Leaders enjoyed the opportunity to contribute to meaningful initiatives during their last week in San Francisco. On Wednesday, the group departs for Washington D.C. for the concluding week of #techwomen18. First, however, it’s time to celebrate: the TechWomen network will come together this evening for the Community Celebration, where five seed grant winners will be announced and we will celebrate everyone’s incredible accomplishments during this year’s program.