Young adults are poised to strengthen democracy, and as we enter a presidential election year, our nation’s youth play a pivotal role in shaping the future of Appalachia. The problem is young adults often feel disengaged or disconnected from the voting process – 33% of young adults indicating that they have no intention to participate civically in 2024 according to a survey from the Institute for Citizens and Scholars.
That’s why 100 Days is hiring community leaders in four Appalachian states – West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Ohio and Tennessee — to convene young adults from our region in conversations about civic engagement and elections. Our goal is to gain a deeper understanding of how they feel about voting and other democratic processes impacting their lives.
100 Days is now accepting applications for four paid, part-time positions to assist us in organizing, conducting outreach and recruiting participants for this project, which will take place between January and October of 2024. In addition to recruiting participants, these individuals will play a key role in facilitating one virtual and one local, in-person conversation that reflects their community’s needs while addressing their challenges. These individuals should have a strong community network, or the desire and motivation to build one, along with the ability to recruit up to 20 participants between the ages of 18-24 who reflect the diverse concerns of their state.
“We are looking for community conveners who can accurately identify the realities of youth in their state and actively engage young adults to participate in this program,” said 100 Days in Appalachia Editor-in-Chief Dana Coester. “We want to build a collaborative team that is open to creating meaningful, honest conversations with youth from the region so that we can identify what challenges they face with civic engagement and assist them in overcoming these specific challenges.”
By joining this project, you can be part of a dynamic team working to change that. We believe that more should be done to civically prepare and support young adults, and through our collective efforts, we can empower the next generation to participate in shaping their own future.
Our hope is that young adults leave this experience feeling their perspectives and voices matter in the upcoming election and that they play an important role in democratic processes. Through virtual and in-person discussions, our aim is for them to feel reengaged with people in their communities whose lives and expertise are rich with humanities-based knowledge. After these discussions, we hope to witness increased participation and engagement in the 2024 election cycle, both at the local and national levels, among young adults in Appalachia.
“When we work with young people, we find that they don’t necessarily have a shared understanding of what ‘democracy’ means — and why would they?” said Dr. Joel Beeson, researcher and author at 100 Days in Appalachia. “This project asks them to engage deeply with history as a first step in defining their own and their community’s futures through democratic processes.”
Role: Community Convener
Location: Appalachian counties in West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Ohio or Tennessee
Timeframe: January to October 2024
Commitment: Part-time, paid virtual position
This is not an hourly position, but we anticipate a variable commitment at the above rate for about 5-15 hours per week. You will invoice each month using the template provided.
- Organize and conduct outreach efforts in collaboration with 100 Days team
- Recruit up to 20 participants aged 18-24; Primarily non-college young adults who are representative of local demographics
- Organize and facilitate one virtual and one in-person event in collaboration with 100 Days team
- Center community needs and priorities in conversation and recruiting efforts
- Collaborate with local leaders across political spectrum
Community Convener Qualifications
100 Days is seeking individuals who have:
- A strong community network in their state or the motivation to build one
- A passion for empowering young adults to participate in civic engagement
- Excellent communication and interpersonal skills and are energized by collaboration
- Organizational and project management abilities
If you are interested in the Community Convener position, please fill out the short form available here.
This project provides a unique opportunity for community conveners to inspire and engage Appalachian youth in shaping their own future and the future of their communities. For more information about 100 Days, please contact us at [email protected].