Common Roots

The Common Roots Youth Organizer Program is a joint project of CPA and People Organizing to Demand Environmental and Economic Rights (PODER).

Common Roots was founded in 1998 as a collaborative summer leadership program serving low-income Chinese and Latino youth in San Francisco. It has since expanded to a full year program. Each year a core group of youth leaders work together to develop cross-cultural solidarity, deepened understanding of social and political issues impacting their communities, and further leadership and organizing skills.

The youth participating in the program go through an intensive environmental and economic justice leadership development program. Moreover, the youth are rooted in grassroots, direct action campaigns that impact on local and regional institutions that affect youth, low-income residents and people of color. The program aims to instill in youth an understanding and commitment to participating in the political process and broader movements for social change.