MILWAUKEE — For the past four years, Fiserv Forum has been used for special events and major concerts, and of course, it's the home of the Milwaukee Bucks and Marquette Golden Eagles.
On Tuesday, Fiserv Forum's atrium was turned into a space to motivate and inspire youth. They talked about everything from reckless driving to mentoring.
MENTOR Greater Milwaukee Powered by the Milwaukee Bucks partnered with a number of community organizations for their first-ever Youth Voice Summit.
Lanelle Ramey is the Executive Director of MENTOR Greater Milwaukee.
"The whole objective is really to get young people to talk about issues and get solutions. Under the mentor umbrella, we want them to understand having a mentor in their life is important, which allows them to use their voice when they're making these types of decisions," said Ramey.
Youth.gov reports that mentoring for young people lowers high school dropout rates, improves interpersonal skills, and improves behavior at home and at school. Fifteen-year-old Reuben Jimenez serves as an ambassador for Mentor Greater Milwaukee.
"Mentoring, in general, is important because mentorship, it kinda helps not only the individual, like the mentee but the mentor because they both gain from that experience, whether it be skills or the knowledge gained from that relationship," said Jimenez.
Tuesday's summit served as an opportunity to address recent issues within the community like reckless driving and creates seats at the table where young people often feel silenced or ignored.
"Today we have the city attorney here that's going to be sitting in on a session with them so she can hear from them, what they're seeing, what they believe can be the right solutions to help solve some of these problems," said Ramey.
It certainly is positive news to know that there are organizations across Milwaukee that are working together to provide mentoring and the opportunity for young people to take the initiative to create positive change. Sixteen-year-old Christine Hughes knows he can be a part of that change.
"I feel like we're the future and you know we have to advocate for ourselves," said Hughes.
For more information on MENTOR Greater Milwaukee, click here.