Imagine Red Lodge: A collaboration between youths and adults begins

Eleanor Guerrero   
Senior CCN Reporter

There was a nonprofit day a week ago at Red Lodge High School. But the kids who took advantage of opportunities to stretch their interests and imagination, it went a few steps further. There was a dream sheet of sorts, where Jael Kampfe invited students to list all their dreams for change and how they would like to see Red Lodge. 
With the help of Red Lodge High School teacher Kate Belinda, the concept evolved into an actual event centering around how to make these dreams come true. 
Before it could happen, there had to be some structure for the event. This came with a pre-planning day on Monday, Nov. 13.   
Students gathered in RLHS Teacher Kate Belinda's class to discuss possibilities and have some handle on the students who would volunteer to co-host the event with the adults and students picked various areas of interest they would like to pursue with the students. There was broad talk of ideas for discussion as possible projects. 
Travis Burdick stressed the value of having access to music in his life. "Just having even simple garage bands made my high school experience so much better." he wants people to dream of change. "Even if it seems impossible, it can happen."
Rue Freeman, who works with student volunteers for the Red Lodge Area Community Foundation, came to the planning and spoke up for more access for students around town to art. Freeman explained, "High school is a tricky time of life. If not enough people were helping me..." She noted that "art creates new projects and ways to explore." She challenged them. "I would really love to have students come support art in this town. Put together a show-it would be amazing!"
RLHS Principal Rex Ternan talked about how exciting it would be to have a youth center where young people could gather for fun or creative opportunities.
The group of students and adult adivisors agreed there must be short term and long term goals for the "Imagine Red Lodge" event. 
The ideas chosen so far include music, art, nondiscrimination, activities outdoors, intergenerational and community events activities, club sports, and students possibly having a voice on city council. 
Belinda encouraged them to stretch their minds. "This is truly your opportunity. I will inform teachers-we do a lot of amazing stuff." She wants the community to be aware of all these good efforts and to support the students. She noted, "There are no limits." 
Belinda added, " I think it can be even bigger...when high school students and adults and everybody are talking and making things happen."
The event took place at the end of the day, Tuesday, Nov. 14, after 5 p.m. at Honey's Cafe.
For the co-hosts, the event began with introductions. Then came the brainstorming. Each one took time to think and then shared their ideas. The ideas were written on a flip chart. Later, they prioritized the ideas. 
The group stuck to their plan and students and advisors worked on prioritizing the ideas. 
Belinda challenged them asking if they had to pick only one idea to pursue in the first year, which idea do they think if it were successful would make all the other ideas possible? "In other words, what is the highest priority idea to pursue first?"  
Ternan concluded of the event, "It's so cool that the community wants to work with you. You can make a difference. it's a huge impact on Red Lodge.
The event will be summarized and reported to the full group of participants. the collaboration will be ongoing.



Upcoming Events

  • Monday, July 22, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Joliet Group meets at the Community Center Monday at 7 p.m.
  • Tuesday, July 23, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Now Group meets at the Bridger United Methodist Church, 222 W. Broadway (west entrance of church) Tuesday at 7 p.m.
  • Thursday, July 25, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Meets every Thursday, 7 p.m. – 8 p.m. at the Red Lodge Area Community Foundation, 122 S. Hauser. It is open to all. 425- 1755.
  • Thursday, July 25, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Clarks Fork Group meets at St. Joseph’s Catholic Hall, north end of Montana Avenue, Thursday at 7 p.m.
  • Friday, July 26, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Rock Creek Group meets Tuesdays and Saturdays at 8 a.m. and Wednesdays and Fridays at 7 p.m. at Calvary Church, 9 N Villard, Red Lodge.
  • Monday, July 29, 2019 - 7:00pm
    Joliet Group meets at the Community Center Monday at 7 p.m.

The Carbon County News

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11 N. Broadway, Red Lodge, MT 59068

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