Kidest Yigezu

2019 – NEW YORK (ROCHESTER REGION)

Kidest Yigezu is currently a senior at Arcadia High School in Rochester. She is president of the Mosaics Club, which opens doors to start dialogues about racial inequality and social justice. The club helps students participate in events such as Roc2Change and create connections with others who want to make change. Kidest is also working on creating a Mosaics club for the middle school, as she believes in teaching the youth. She is also a part of The Delegates of Change, a group she created through an internship at the library. The Delegates of Change is a youth-run committee working towards building better relationships and raising awareness about various social issues within the community. The group hosted an event called Teen Talks at the Greece Library and invited teens from the city library to participate. Using the TED Talk "The Danger of a Single Story" by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie as a conversation starter, they discussed the social and economic issues that arise from assigning people a "single story" and how those stories often promote racist ideas. Through this conversation, they were able to raise awareness of the stigma many POC face daily and present possible strategies to reduce racism. Kidest also attends meetings about Black Lives Matter in school and participates in protests and rallies because she believes it is important to spread our message with others.