Home Other Pages NJJN Forum 2019

NJJN Forum 2019



We are excited to have you join us at NJJN's 2019 Forum "Modeling Youth Led Advocacy" held from Monday, July 22 - Wednesday, July 24 in Washington, DC.

This year our annual event centers the work and and wisdom of young people, who were instrumental in planning our three days together.  We will engage deeply with young people and will elevate systems change work that is led by youth-adult partnerships across the country.  We will also spend a day together to work collectively towards our vision of creating an anti-racist youth justice network. 

The National Juvenile Justice Network is a member-driven advocacy community. As such, we reserve the first two days of our Forum to gather as a membership body to celebrate, network and tend to business. On Wednesday, July 24th, we open up our Forum to all allies in the youth justice reform movement to hone in on the issues that face youth and provide solutions to push for fair and equitable treatment of all young people.

Please note that we have separate registration pages for members and non-members below. Not sure if you are a member? Check out your state page. 

Registration Deadline: Friday, July 12, 2019





The Forum will be held at Arnold & Porter LLP (map), in Washington, DC.  A special reception will be held at Busboys and Poets (map) on the evening of Tuesday, July 23rd to honor our youth justice award winners.   


The closest hotel is Hampton Inn Washington-Downtown-Convention Center (map).  



Below is a preview of our three days together:

Monday, July 22nd: Training and Site Visits

11 AM - 12 PM Hill Visit Training (Paul Porter Room)

Welcome to DC! What a great time to meet with your federal representatives on the Hill. We encourage members to attend our briefing and then visit their representatives.

11:30 AM - 5 PM Lunch & Training Sessions 

  • 11:30 AM - 5:00 PM Young Leaders Trip to African American Smithsonian: Grab lunch at Arnold and Porter and head to the Smithsonian as a group to explore the museum at 1 PM. Note that this activity will run til 4 PM EST.

  • 12:00 PM - 2:00 PM Advocacy Training Session (Room 11320): Designed for individuals new to the advocacy space, this workshop will ground folks in the basics of moving policy reform.
  • 12:00 - 2:00 PM Peer Fundraising Session (Room 11200): Join with peers to discuss strategies for fundraising such as building relationships with funders, special events, and individual giving.

2 PM - 5 PM Embodied Leadership (Paul Porter Room)

Explore the core values and principles that drive your passion for justice. Led by Rusia Mohiuddin, from Universal Partnership, this workshop will help you draw a line between values and actions. We hope you come away with a deeper connection to your purpose, elvating your social change leadership.

6 PM Young Leaders Meet Up

Calling all young leaders! Join us in the hotel lobby for dinner and an informal meet and greet. Gather with peers from all over the country working to ensure youth are supported.


Tuesday, July 23rd: Pursuing Anti-Racism

Facilitated by Makani Themba and Maggie Potochuk of High Ground Change Strategies

8:30 AM - 9 AM Breakfast and Check In (Paul Porter Room)

9 AM - 10 AM Breaking the Ice (Paul Porter Room)

In setting the stage for our Racial Justice work, our young leaders have prepared an interactive ice breaker to frame our community agreements.

10 AM - 10:30 AM Grounding our Work (Paul Porter Room)

Before we jump in, let's get on the same page. NJJN staff will give some background on our journey so far. Then we will play  an interactive word game so we all talk the same language.

10:30 AM - 11 AM Painting a Picture of Progress (Paul Porter Room)

Participants will be asked to engage in a mural activity. Prompts will be posted across the room for participants to react to, write their thoughts on, draw their perspective, or just creatively share where they are in the work. There will be time for a full gallery walk and report out.

11 AM - 12 PM Share Goals and Benchmark(Paul Porter Room)

As we work to become anti-racist organizations, we want to strive toward shared goals. Help us chart this course!

12 PM - 1 PM Lunch (Paul Porter Room)

Talking about race all day can take a toll. Take some time to recenter yourself, breathe, move, or just chat with friends. We will hop back into the work after lunch.

1 PM - 2:30 PM Role Play (Paul Porter Room)

Based on the morning's discussion, participants will identify common challenges. Groups will then role play how to resolve these challenges, learning in real time how to overcome obstacles.

2:30 PM - 4 PM Clinics (Paul Porter Room)

Members will have time to work on plans for their organizations or themselves as they seek to move anti-racism in their lives and work. We will share takeaways in an interactive gallery walk.

Clinic options will include a session on SELF-CARE designed by Rusia Mohiuddin, from Universal Partnership. (Room 11200)

4 PM - 5 PM Holding Each Other Accountable (Paul Porter Room)

The work continues when we go back to our respective states, so how will we hold ourselves accountable? How will members hold NJJN responsible? How should NJJN hold members accountable? What should member to member accountability look like?

6 PM - 8 PM Awards Ceremony & Open Mic Night

(Busboys and Poets 450 K ST NW)

Join NJJN at Busboys and Poets for our Annual Awards Ceremony followed by young leader hosted Open Mic Night. Come prepared to share your talents, enjoy light refreshments, and celebrate some of our fearless leaders.

Award Winners:

  • Kathy Wright, Gutsy Advocate for Youth
  • Nubia Pena, Emerging Leader Award
  • Alani Rouse, Young Justice Leader Award 

Wednesday, July 24th: A Path to Youth Led Advocacy

Hosted by NJJN's Young Justice Leaders

8 AM - 9:00 AM Legislative Issue Breakfast (Optional) (Paul Porter Room)

Join national campaigns for a recap of 2019 legislative sessions thus far.

Organizations include:

  • Campaign for the Fair Sentencing of Youth
  • Campaign for Youth Justice
  • Human Rights for Kids
  • Juvenile Law Center
  • National Juvenile Defender Center
  • YouthFirst!

9 AM - 9:30 AM Welcome and Icebreaker (Paul Porter Room)

Group Poetry Activity & Review Group Agreements

9:30 - 11 AM What are Youth-Adult Partnerships (Paul Porter Room)

Hear from youth and adults about what partnership means to them and some simple steps to make the most of working together. This panel aims to introduce the concept of youth adult partnerships and how organizations can begin to invest in these relationships.

11:15 AM – 12:00 PM Modeling Youth Adult Partnerships (Paul Porter Room)

This workshop will showcase four different models of youth engagement:

  • Mentoring featuring Cadeem Gibbs, NJJN's Young Leader Coordinator.
  • Partnering with and building power with youth led organizations featuring Kansas Appleseed and Progeny.
  • Youth Led Organizing featuring Youth Arts and Self-Empowerment Program.
  • Emerging Adult Leadership 

Join a table that interests you to learn how others have integrated these strategies, hiccups along the way, and steps you can take in your own organization.

12 PM - 12:15 PM Mapping Our Wins (Paul Porter Room)

Grab a sheet of paper and help us map youth justice wins across the country! Write or draw your win and place on the wall for all to see.

12:15 PM - 1 PM Lunch & Networking (Paul Porter Room)

1:00 PM - 2:30 PM Practicing Partnerships: Justice Issue Labs (Paul Porter Room)

Grab lunch and find a justice issue lab on a topic that interests you. Identify a vision for justice, policy recommendations, and strategy for achieving the vision.  Topics include:

  • School to Prison Pipeline facilitated by Youth Justice Project - NC. 
  • Closing Youth Prisons facilitated by RISE for Youth - VA.
  • Diversion facilitated by NJJN  
  • Adultification facilitated by South Carolina Representatives.
  • Criminalization of Immigrant Youth  facilitated by Youth Justice Project- CA.

2:30 PM - 3:00 PM Closing Art Activity (Paul Porter Room)


This event will be photographed and videotaped.