Alternatives in Your Community
Your community may also have resources which can help you. Community-based organizations have successfully used directories, multimedia computer software, and college access programs to make young people like you aware of their alternatives.
In several cities across the country, local groups have compiled mini-directories that contain information about local organizations that help young people prepare for college, get experience or training, or seek employment.
Examples include the following:
Project on Youth and
Non-Military Opportunities (Project YANO), a San Diego organization, produces
the "Alternative Resources Directory," a listing of job training and other
resources in the San Diego County area.
for Youth of Austin, Texas, offers information to youth about the choices
they face upon leaving school. Nonmilitary Options for Youth seeks to balance
the military recruitment campaign with a contrasting view on military enlistment
and JROTC, to educate youth about nonmilitary alternatives for skills training,
finding jobs and college financial aid, to explore the ideas of volunteering,
and to promote careers in peacemaking and social change. They focus mainly
on Austin and the surrounding area, but the web site provides other links
as well. They also have a variety of literature, videos, and computer software.
In the past, several AFSC
offices have produced similar resources. One example is the AFSC Youth and
Militarism Program (now reconfigured) in Baltimore, MD. They produced a series
of 4 pamphlets: "Should I go to college?: Higher Education," "Can I Afford
to Go to College?: Higher Education," "Success, Start Your Own Business: Entrepreneur,"
and "Earn While You Learn: Apprenticeships." These resources have not been
updated for several years but may still provide useful information of the
types of opportunities and resources you may want to explore.
Campaigns in Schools
The Committee for Youth and Nonmilitary Opportunities began counter-recruitment-equal access work in 1991, encouraged by successful counter-recruitment lawsuits in federal courts around the country in the 1980's (and concerned by the glorification of the military by the news media during the Gulf War). Read about it.
College Access Program:
The AFSC West Virginia Economic Justice Program started a project to help
young people negotiate the college application and aid process. The program
has since changed and expanded. Now, it trains volunteers to help people of
all ages get access to higher education. This includes holding workshops about
financial aid, developing handouts, etc. The AFSC program can be reached at:
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