Digital Literacy: Elsie and Brian Shape Their Participants' Future!

 AFJ Updates: Digital Literacy for ATI youth, a Graduation, and #BlackLivesMatter Experiences

Avenues for Justice (AFJ)s community centers in Harlem and the Lower East Side are both equipped with computer labs. But when our centers closed for the COVID crisis, and 275 of our youth went into quarantine, the digital divide became very real, especially as youth tried to navigate homeschooling. AFJ geared up and equipped our youth with laptops, tablets and phones and quickly moved all of our own programs online. We soon realized that more coaching was needed, so we purchased digital literacy training software with certification.


Two Court Advocates - Brian Stanley and Elsie Flores - took the lead in launching the digital literacy program, while the rest of the team of court advocates recruited participants for the class. Our youth now convene online with staff every Monday for questions and certification testing, and then work independently through the week through the self-paced modules.


In July, additional online training programs are being launched, beginning with a 30-hour construction safety class. In addition to leading the digital literacy class, Elsie and Brian are juggling other noteworthy achievements.

Elsie Flores

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Elsie Flores, former AFJ participant and current AFJ Court Advocate, graduated last month from John Jay College of Criminal Justice with her Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice! AFJ is so proud of Elsie incredible difference she has made in her community.

We wish we could have all been there together to cheer her on in person, but unfortunately—due to COVID-19–we had to send her our congrats from afar. 


See her Instagram post with her graduation pictures here!

Brian Stanley

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One of Brian’s digital literacy students and participants, Moses, is currently in a residential drug treatment program which requires that all residents stay indoors. Moses, like most of our young people, has a weary perception of law enforcement. For years, Moses has felt that he was targeted because of the color of his skin. He knows that if not for the residential treatment program, he would be out in the streets protesting, despite the imminent risk of arrest. 


Read full blog about Brian and Moses here!



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