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October 11, 2020 @ 12:43 pm

Changing the Narrative Unhoused Youth -Stories of the TAY: La Lupe

Lupe Cerda’s story starts with the promise of new beginnings in a new country. Her family, a family with strong bonds, took a  leap of faith to build a better future. But life isn’t always fair, and the loss of her mother to cancer soon after arrival, set her on a different, much harder path. 

 

 With her father unavailable as he struggles to provide, a brother lost to his own challenges, and other traumatic events that isolate her emotionally, Lupe is left on her own to deal with the pain of grief, coming out in a traditionally conservative family, and surrendering to the call of addiction. When homelessness, addiction, and abuse, made Lupe tougher than she ever had to be, she did the bravest thing of all. She allowed herself to be vulnerable. She sought help. In recovery, housed, employed, and repairing her relationships, Lupe shares her story.

 

The brightest rainbows come after the worst storms.

 

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We wish all the best to Lupe and her dad as they rebuild their relationship. 

If you need help, start here: The Village Family Services Drop-in Center for homeless youth. No questions asked, they will help you.

 

This episode also features fellow DiC TAY (Transitional Age Youth) Gayle Alvarez, and counselor Alejandro Soria.

 

Learn more about Changing the Narrative at Connectopod.net

 

Produced by Betsy Foldes Meiman

Sound Engineered by Joe Foldes

Theme Song 'True' by Haunted Horses NYC  

 

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September 26, 2020 @ 2:08 pm

Changing the Narrative: Unhoused Youth -Stories of the TAY: Gayle

Everything is coming up roses for 24 year old Gayle Alvarez. But it was a lot of hard work to make this garden grow. From homelessness to peer counselor to employment specialist for homeless youth at The Village Family Services, she has turned her needing into leading. She shares her journey through undiagnosed mental illness and how she found her way in hopes it will encourage others who find themselves on the edge. 

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Produced: Betsy Foldes Meiman

Theme Song 'True' by Haunted Horses NYC  

Sound Engineering: Joe Foldes

 

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September 10, 2020 @ 1:07 pm

Changing the Narrative: Unhoused Youth Intro episode

Changing the Narrative is a Connectopod series created with youth in communities that get a bad rap in the media. This is an intro episode for our third season, Changing the Narrative: Unhoused Youth, we are in residence at The Village Family Services in North Hollywood working with drop in center director Alejandro Soria.  The TAY (Transitional Age Youth) get personal about homelessness, including issues surrounding mental health, LGBTQ discrimination, pandemic madness, domestic violence, attending college, finding work, dealing with addiction, and how to rise above their situation. Mostly, they just want to be teens. 

The series content will be created in one on one interviews. Then the TAY will work remotely and individually with a professional media guest artist to create an episode about whatever they want, however they want to tell it. Will it be personal narratives? Straight out journalism? Activism? Creative  fiction? Music? Comedy? It is their story to tell.

 

Interviewees: Dir. Counselor Alejandro Soria, Youth Peer Counselor Bobby Villa

Produced by Betsy Foldes Meiman

Theme Song 'True' by Haunted Horses NYC  

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This project is supported in part by NBC 4 /Telemundo Project Innovation, UCLA/Kaiser Permanente Center for Health Equity, The Max Factor Family Foundation, and for our new audio lab- Rastonea Records and Elizabeth Forsythe Hailey. Thanks to Kenny Merrill and Kevin Kapler for setting it up.

 

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July 6, 2020 @ 2:19 am

Reflect Connect: Connectopod Contributor Highlight- Laz Meiman

The Reflect/Connect series highlights long time Connectopod contributors. This episode features Laz Meiman, who has been with us from the very beginning! He's been a reporter, a supporter, a teacher, and this coming fall he is joining our producing team for our Changing the Narrative:Unhoused Youth series.

Laz is an independent thinker who wants to turn his perceptive talents to government, where he feels he can effective as a proponent of positive change. In this interview, we go from interesting moments in history (Fred Hampton and the Rainbow Coalition, to the stress of becoming a high school senior, to how to slice up an ox).

We love Laz because he is empathetic, perceptive, and a total team player. His passion for history has inspired some great episodes over the years. Now he is looking toward a new college chapter in his life. We can't wait to see where he goes from here!

!Laz_on_the_job_with_ferets_8w0pi.jpg doing important intern work at Assembly Member Jesse Gabriel's office.

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At 10 teaching a stop motion animation workshop to fellow podcasters

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Laz on the State Assembly floor in Sacramento, sponsoring a bill through the YMCA's Model Legislature and Court program

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Goof in the Booth, collaborating with fellow Connectopod lifer, Daniela Catalan.

 

 

 

 

 

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May 29, 2020 @ 11:39 am

Changing the Narrative, Episode 3 Wanting to Live

Young. Black. Alone. How do you lift yourself up when faced with trauma, few options, and a mountain of history pinning you down? The answers lie in connection and community. Paul Terry knew from Day 1 of the Changing the Narrative  youth program what he wanted his topic to be. Having battled depression, he wanted to reach out and connect with others who might be suffering. Mentors and a sense of purpose had helped him stand back up. In his interview with  SJLI staff members, Education Equity Programs Manager and educational scholar David Turner, and Health Equity Programs Director Derek Steele, Paul searches the underlying causes of depression in communities of color. What emerges is a nuanced narrative that fills the room with affirmation and hope. 

More than half of the podcasters in our mentoring program, are mentors themselves, volunteering in their churches, at SJLI, and at various youth programs offering their musical, tutoring and coding skills. In creating opportunities for themselves in business and art and career choices, they all made choices that lift others up. Connection. Community.

Jonathan Zeno offers up "Legacy" a poem that powerfully reflects the interview with a chilling sound design by Daniel P. Castillo

Music:

Young Ambition: Be Free, Infinity, Inner Thoughts

Quest: Soul Journey

Visit the Changing the Narrative page on our site for more content

 Produced/edited by Betsy Foldes Meiman

Created in a 5 week collaboration between Connectopod and The Social Justice Learning Institute, developed and taught by by Andrea Lopez, Daniel P. Castillo, and Betsy Foldes Meiman

Original concept for Changing the Narrative by Daniel P. Castillo.

Changing the Narrative is supported in part by a generous grant from the California Arts Council, a state agency. Learn more at arts.ca.gov 

Thank you! 

 

 

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April 24, 2020 @ 6:02 pm

The Reflect/Connect episode 1: An interview with Connectopod correspondent Angie Benitez

Angelica Benitez has been podcasting with us since she was a teeny 10 and Connectopod wasn't even crawling yet. Though she was small, her subjects were always big. She looked at Dio de Los Muertos via Aztec origins, immigration via the plight of kids on La Bestia, the science of robot roaches, and threw interview questions that caught the adult interviewees off guard with their depth. She's grown into a solid producer as well, contacting and arranging events like a presentation with Guide Dogs of America for an audience of 50, and learning how to edit a full episode. 

Angie has the idea for a series on Teen Mental health. In this interview, which took place last year, producer Betsy Foldes Meiman talks with Angie about the personal roots of this project. #tmh series will be revisited this year.

 

 A note about 'Reflect/Connect': with our programs on pause due to coronavirus lockdown, we are taking this opportunity to highlight our reporters and go back for some great stories that got left behind as well as to connect with youth who want to share their pandemic experience. If you are under 21 and would like to contribute a story or a perhaps an interview with someone close to you that has a story you'd like to share, connect with us on Instagram @connectopod or via our website connectopod.net. We may be isolated during this Pandemic, but we are all connected.

 

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Angie now and then (Daniela Catalan on the left in the second pic)

 

Music credits: Written by Popovic

Recorded and produced by Popovic / Vodovoz: 

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March 10, 2020 @ 5:10 pm

LAPL NoHo workshop practice- Gen & Anthony “No Bad Ideas”

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Connectopod, as official LAPL performers, worked with a swell bunch of teens at The Los Angeles Public Library North Hollywood Branch. Our LAPL hour-long workshop introduces the concept of podcasting to teens.

Our goals: get kids talking and realize they have interesting things to say, demystify tech, and have some fun recording.

We don't usually post the workshops,  but we thought we'd share the experience with you this time. These clever podcasters from NoHo had about 20 minutes after we did some instructional games to create their shows that including some entertaining and insightful nuggets. These are raw episodes, no post production or music though I did edit content slightly for time.  Read more here.

 Here for your listening pleasure are first-time podcasters Gen & Anthony discussing No Ideas at all.

For special projects such as the series done for Canoga Park and a special project for Mar Vista, read more here ). 

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March 10, 2020 @ 5:06 pm

LAPL NoHo workshop practice- Elliot & Kai “Pain. And Mall Cops”

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Connectopod, as official LAPL performers, worked with a swell bunch of teens at The Los Angeles Public Library North Hollywood Branch. Our LAPL hour-long workshop introduces the concept of podcasting to teens.

Our goals: get kids talking and realize they have interesting things to say, demystify tech, and have some fun recording.

We don't usually post the workshops,  but we thought we'd share the experience with you this time. These clever podcasters from NoHo had about 20 minutes after we did some instructional games to create their shows that including some entertaining and insightful nuggets. These are raw episodes, no post production or music though I did edit content slightly for time.  Read more here.

 Here for your listening pleasure are first-time podcasters Elliot & Kai discussing Pain. And mall cops. 

For special projects such as the series done for Canoga Park and a special project for Mar Vista, read more here ). 

 

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March 10, 2020 @ 5:02 pm

LAPL NoHo workshop practice-Leslie & Ivonne “Being a Teenager Sucks”

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Connectopod, as official LAPL performers, worked with a swell bunch of teens at The Los Angeles Public Library North Hollywood Branch. Our LAPL hour-long workshop introduces the concept of podcasting to teens.

Our goals: get kids talking and realize they have interesting things to say, demystify tech, and have some fun recording.

We don't usually post the workshops,  but we thought we'd share the experience with you this time. These clever podcasters from NoHo had about 20 minutes after we did some instructional games to create their shows that including some entertaining and insightful nuggets. These are raw episodes, no post production or music though I did edit content slightly for time.  Read more here.

 Here for your listening pleasure are first-time podcasters Leslie & Ivonne discussing the why being a teenager sucks.

 

For special projects such as the series done for Canoga Park and a special project for Mar Vista, read more here ). 

 

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March 10, 2020 @ 4:50 pm

LAPL NoHo workshop practice-Katherine and Diego ‘Beer vs. Virus’

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Connectopod, as official LAPL performers, worked with a swell bunch of teens at The Los Angeles Public Library North Hollywood Branch. Our LAPL hour-long workshop introduces the concept of podcasting to teens.

Our goals: get kids talking and realize they have interesting things to say, demystify tech, and have some fun recording.

We don't usually post the workshops,  but we thought we'd share the experience with you this time. These clever podcasters from NoHo had about 20 minutes after we did some instructional games to create their shows that including some entertaining and insightful nuggets. These are raw episodes, no post production or music though I did edit content slightly for time.  Read more here.

 Here for your listening pleasure are first-time podcasters Diego and Katherine discussing the Corona Virus.

 

For special projects such as the series done for Canoga Park and a special project for Mar Vista, read more here ). 

 

 

 

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