The Alameda Youth Advisory Commission was created by the city of Alameda, California in school year 2007-2008 in an effort to ensure better representation of the youth in the city’s affairs. The body shall serve as the mouthpiece of Alameda’s youth, ensuring that the sentiments, feelings and aspirations of the city’s future leaders and citizens will be heard and considered in policy and decision making that will impact on the city’s constituents and stakeholders. City officials shall come to consult the Commission for matters and issues concerning the youth.
And in the performance of its mandate, the Commission regularly meets to discuss agendas pertinent to the Alameda youth. The meeting of members of the Commission last February 26, 2008 in the city hall is one example of how the body articulates and talks about the issues significant to the youth. The meeting was held in Room 360 of the City Hall at exactly 5:00 PM in the afternoon. The meeting started with a roll call of the participants. All came promptly, except for one who arrived late. There were also two members who were absent for the said meeting. The second part of the meeting is the approval of the minutes of the past meeting, February 12, 2008. And the approval proved to be unanimous. The third section of the meeting is involved in oral communications. At this juncture, the Commission is opening its floor to any party who wish to bring up an issue salient to the city’s youth. After this, the meeting proceeded to the written communications wherein the body screened letters or communications addressed to it. The Alameda Youth Advisory Commission was invited to attend the “Youth in Civic Leadership Symposium” to be held at Berkeley City College on March 8, 2008.
Afterwards, the Commission began to tackling new business issues. The main item discussed was the voluntary selection of Commissioners who will serve for one year staggered terms. Five commissioners volunteered in this regard. The next item of the meeting was the discussion of the Commission’s unfinished business, namely that of its by-laws. Deliberations were made on the Commission’s by-laws pertaining to such points as term of office and term limits, selection process and residency and criteria for attendance during meetings, among others. A round of general verbal communications was again held. Two members of the body raised the issue that the next meeting shall fall on the spring break and calendared the same for further discussion. The Commission was invited to attend the Alameda Youth Committee Talent Show. They were also informed of the two other youth events for the city’s teens, namely that of the Job Search this coming April 10 and Job Faire this coming April 24. The next meeting was set on March 11, 2008 and shortly thereafter the meeting was finally adjourned.
The meeting transpired in an orderly and organized fashion. As an observer, I came to know how attentive the Commissioners are and how crucial is the role they play for the interests and welfare of Alameda’s youth. The members of the Commission have demonstrated tact and professionalism in the conduct of their duties and I can sense that all of them have deeply inculcated their responsibilities well. I saw how professional and dedicated they are and I was inspired by the fact that at a tender age they are already extending public service. Their commitment will surely encourage other youth to action. For high school and college graduates, such activities as job fairs organized or facilitated by the Commission will surely provide jobs to many youths taking them away from streets where they could be susceptible to crime or providing them the opportunity to earn in order to pursue further studies or technical training. Aside from valuable lessons in parliamentary processes and procedures, the work in the Commission no doubt provides a good training ground for future leaders of Alameda.
Meeting of the Alameda Youth Advisory Commission. Alameda City Hall, CA., 26 Feb. 2008.