Young Voices Midyear Memo, FY 2016-17

It’s hard to believe that six months have passed since Young Voices incorporated as an independent nonprofit. What a journey it’s been! Young Voices has given 259 students and young professionals a voice for liberty this fall through media training and article workshopping.

Here’s what we did:

  • Campus Pundit Program It’s no secret that there’s a crisis on college campuses these days. From Yale to Mizzou, students across the United States have started calling for “safe spaces” and “trigger warnings” instead of free speech. To combat this disturbing trend, Young Voices launched our Campus Pundit Program in August, rewarding students with a $50 commission for successfully publishing an op-ed defending freedom in their student newspaper or local publication. Thanks to the generosity of a donor, we doubled the offer in September to $100 for articles specifically defending free speech. In total, we received 32 articles, of which 18 were published in schools like Clemson, Swarthmore, University of Michigan, and my alma mater UC Berkeley.
  • Article Workshopping As part of our mission to empower the next generation of pro-liberty writers, Young Voices teamed up with the Charles Koch Institute to train dozens of their interns and fellows in the nuts and bolts of policy op-ed writing. Since June, I’ve delivered four presentations, both in person and online, to approximately 100 young professionals working for libertarian and conservative nonprofits. After each, Managing Editor Stacy Ndlovu and I then personally workshopped articles with 53 participants, pitching their pieces for publication in well-read outlets like Forbes and The Hill.
  • Advocate Program Finally, the cornerstone of Young Voices’ programming — our media advocacy program for young writers — has grown in leaps and bounds. As of the time of writing, we have 75 Advocates representing 14 countries. This is a strong list of some of the liberty movement’s brightest young minds, assembled over our years of operations under Students For Liberty. Since our transition, Young Voices’ Managing Editor Stacy Ndlovu and I have put a greater focus on both the quantity and quality of our media hits. As a result, we’ve nearly doubled our output comparing the first six months of our operations to the previous six.

This is just the beginning! In the next six months, Young Voices has ambitious plans to ramp up our media training capabilities, increase our radio and television presence, and potentially double the size of our staff. In these politically uncertain times, it’s critical that a clear voice for liberty is heard from the youth. Young Voices aims to be that microphone, amplifying the message of free minds and free markets across the United States and beyond.

Casey Given
Executive Director
Young Voices

P.S. None of Young Voices’ work is possible without supporters like you. If you would like to make an investment in the next generation of libertarian thought leaders, you can give a tax-deductible gift here. All donations are acknowledged with a thank you letter and IRS receipt. Hurry before tax season starts!

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