Health Justice Philly: Virtual Youth Summit

This is a call for young people (ages 14 – 26) in Philadelphia who are change-makers, creatives, educators and peacekeepers: we want YOU to join the Health Justice Philly’s Virtual Youth Summit. Attend our virtual sessions and then create your own messages and content for social media to share with the City — that could be featured on the Get Healthy Philly Instagram page. Participants (ages 14 – 26) who create and submit a social media campaign will earn a VISA gift card for their work! More details below.

Why are we doing this? We believe young people are at the forefront of moving us toward a culture of peace. You are the ones introducing new ways to address the issues of community violence and systemic racism, AND you have showed up and kept doing all of this everyday, even during a pandemic. 

Now, we have a space for you. Join our series of virtual sessions for teens & young people to learn skills, share tools and create messages for hope, healing and peace in Philly. 

People of all ages are welcome to attend. Just come ready to listen, learn from, and share power with youth voices. 

Sessions happening this week:

Thursday, July 23

Friday, July 24, 2020

Session Descriptions

A Photographer's Point of View

 Thursday, July 16, 2:00 - 2:45PM

Led by Malik Harris, Photographer & Founder of PvPhotography 

This session will show participants how to story with pictures, and demonstrate the connections between photography and everyday life. Participants will learn the importance of using photos to capture emotions and events. Join this session to learn and brainstorm how you can use photos for your final health justice submission!

Femme Healing: Girls, Mental Health and Violence

Thursday, July 16, 3:00 - 3:45PM
Thursday, July 23, 3:00 - 3:45PM

Led by Dijonee Talley and Junika, The Advocacy Institute, Health Promotion Council

Gun violence is the leading cause of death for young Black men in the United States. This disproportionate and direct impact rightfully calls for a great deal of attention, support, and intervention for boys and young men. However, the adjacent experiences of young women and girls are often overlooked, though they too are often victims, survivors, and witnesses to gun violence, as well as caretakers in its aftermath. This session serves as a space for young people to share, learn, and discuss the ways that gun violence impacts the physical and mental health of young women exposed to it.

Healing in the Hood:

Supporting Black Youth in the Aftermath of Gun Violence and Shootings 

Every Thursday June 18 - July 23, 4:00 - 4:45PM

Led by Kendra Van de Water and James Aye,
YEAH Philly 

This session will address the impact and trauma associated with young people after a violent event involving guns in our neighborhoods. This session will create a space for young people to openly discuss their exposure to gun violence in Philadelphia while creating possible solutions for a community response to shootings involving youth. We will explore existing resources and support on a systems level as well as identify tools and resources specifically for young people impacted by gun violence.

Self-Preservation is Activism

Thursdays, July 16 & 23, 5:00 - 5:45PM 
Fridays, July 17 & 24, 4:00 - 4:45PM 

Led by Nahje Royster (she/her), @TheX_Agenda 

This session will be a safe space for Black people to express their feelings about race-based conversations, offer ways to think about the connection between self-care and activism, and allow participants to find comfort in protecting themselves in whatever way they know how. This session will talk about ways to get comfortable turning white people away when they ask race-based questions and the importance of putting ourselves first in a society that thrives through our oppression. With everything that has happened this year, it’s easy to feel guilty for not being at protests and writing think pieces on Twitter and Facebook. However, taking care of ourselves is just as important. 

Building Blocks to Community Organizing

*NEW TIME* Friday, July 17, 2:00 - 2:45PM

Led by Nick Ospa and Lena Talmadge, Youth United for Change

In this session, participants will be provided with the foundational building blocks to community organizing, the importance of organizational development and some insight into the structure of a youth-centered political organization and how it operates. Participants will be challenged to think about the role of leadership and leadership development within organizing.

AFSTBY (A Free Space to Be You)

Friday, July 17, 3:00 - 3:45PM
Thursday, July 23, 7:00 - 7:45PM

Led by Amor Rodriguez, and Shaiheed Days, Youth M.O.V.E. Coordinator

A talent show where you can showcase your artistic expression. A safe place to be heard, share stories, or to join to just feel free to be you, without any judgment.

Teaching Black Love as Early Childhood Development

Friday, July 17, 5:00 - 5:45PM

Led by Tomiko Shine, Cultural Anthropologist, APP-HRC and Christina Rodriguez, Youth Developer

This workshop will focus on the child of African descent and the opportunity of Early Childhood Development as a conduit to teaching the child of African descent their culture and identity inclusive of within a paradigm of Black Love. As research shows a child’s personality is formed by the ages of 3-4, this workshop will challenge practitioners, educators, parents, and community to the necessity of utilizing Black Love/ love of self during the early childhood development of 0-8 years old as a path to familial and communal healing.

COVID in Context: Racism, Segregation and Racial Inequities

Friday July 24, 3:00 - 3:45PM

Led by Dr. Sharrelle Barber, Drexel University

This session will give a historical perspective of structural racism and how it connects to the present public health crisis. Participants will be invited to have a conversation and share their experiences to build a community narrative about how everything that is going on has impacted YOUR life.

Mind Right, Body Right, Ready for More

Thursday July 23, 6:00 - 6:45PM &
Friday July 24, 6:00 - 6:45PM

Led by Shesheena Bray, M.S.Ed 
Going Inward Wellness 

This session will explore the impact of stress on the mind, mood and body. Participants will leave with skills to better manage stress and access relaxation. This session is specifically curated for self identified women.

LIPSTICK (Ladies Involved In Putting a Stop to Inner-City Killing)

Friday July 24, 5:00 - 5:45PM

Led by Dr. Dorothy Johnson-Speight (Facilitator), Michelle Kerr  Spry (Co-facilitator), Rahima Z. Andulla-Sabir (Co-Facilitator) , Mothers In Charge 

The Operation LIPSTICK session is designed to help combat issues of gun violence and its’ effects on the community through education and empowerment. Trafficked guns, those acquired on the illegal market, are a major source of gun violence and gun homicides. This workshop is designed to educate youth about the outcomes of hiding, carrying, or holding illegal guns and the impact of straw purchasing on gun violence and gun homicides.

Extinguishing Locker Room and Cooler Talk:

Conversation of Masculinity, Privilege and Toxicity

Time TBA

Led by Levone Cannady, Women Organized Against Rape (WOAR) 

This session will identify and explain male privilege and traditional male stereotypes. Participants will learn to recognize and challenge male privilege in spaces and areas where sexual violence is normalized, and demonstrate ways to engage and align males as allies against sexual violence.

More sessions coming soon! Register to stay up to date on all the sessions that will be offered.

More Details How To Participate

2020 Virtual Youth Summit Challenge

Submit original creative work for a social media campaign (and the final showcase) that responds to at least 1 of the prompts below to earn a gift card: 


  • What did you learn from the Virtual Youth Summit session that could help build a movement towards community hope, healing, justice, and peace that you want to share with the city?
  • We believe health justice means naming and addressing the roots of injustice that have created differences community health. Thoughtfully describe what health justice means to you, and/or what do you believe are some examples of health justice?
  • How are health and systemic racism connected?
  • How can we inspire community hope, healing, peace, and justice in Philadelphia?
  • What resources do communities need to heal from violence?

Examples of creative work include:

  • Visual art
  • Performing Art
  • Poetry
  • Spoken word
  • Video
  • Original photo with a few sentences to describe the photo
  • Song
  • Or other forms of creative expressions

**No hate speech or profanity will be accepted.**


To submit a creative work and be eligible for a prize, you must:

  • Be 14-26 years old
  • Live in Philadelphia
  • Attend at least 1 Virtual Youth Summit learning session in June or July 2020
  • Work individually or in a group with up to 5 people.
    • Note: Each person is only allowed one submission; each person can be considered for only one prize.
  • Submit only original work
  • Submit by the deadline of July 31, 2020 at 11:59pm

Submission instructions (2 options):

  1. Email your submission to with the subject line: Health Justice Summit Submission by July 31, 2020 at 11:59pm.
  2. Send a direct message to Get Healthy Philly on Instagram (@GetHealthyPhilly) by July 31, 2020 at 11:59pm.
  • IMPORTANT: For both email and Instagram submissions, you must include:
    • The original creative work
    • Full name of participant(s)
    • Telephone number of participant(s)
    • Full mailing address of all participant(s)
      • Note, if you are eligible for a prize, we must have a full and correct mailing address.

Judging submissions

  • A group of judges will score all submissions, using a rubric.
  • What are the qualities of a great submission?
    • Judges will consider four main criteria listed below:
    1. Follows the prompt: Submission is a very clear response to (at least) 1 of the given prompts.
    2. Creativity: The art elements show uniqueness, individuality, and use of imagination.
    3. Quality: Submission is of high quality and appealing, showing great use of art techniques and shows skill within its category of art.
    4. Strength of message: The message is clear, thoughtful, and inspiring to the audience. The participant understands the complex topic and used what they learned from the sessions and also uses outside sources/lived experiences to give the art meaning.
  • Other things to consider:
    • It is great if your creative work has a special focus on Philadelphia.
    • It is not required, but you can consider a topics like COVID-19 and creating healthy environments for nutrition/physical activity/tobacco-free living, as you explore any of the prompts!


  • Your creative work could appear on GHP (other) social media accounts. (insert photo of paid GHP ad/”Your work can appear here!”)
  • Earn a gift card for participation:
  1. The first 25 submitting participants will receive $100 gift cards.
  2. The following 100 submissions will receive $50 gift cards.
  3. Submissions chosen to be featured as a social media campaign will receive $250 gift cards. (image coming soon) 

What is the Health Justice Summit?

The Health Justice Summit is an annual convening of community leaders, public health professionals and residents to provide education, inspire community action, and amplify our power to effect change. It is an opportunity to discuss new approaches to long standing challenges while recognizing that racial, social, and economic justice is fundamental in improving community health. Due to COVID-19, the 2020 Health Justice Summit will be a series of virtual convening throughout the summer aimed at young people ages 14 – 26 to continue building a movement of community hope, healing and peace in Philadelphia.