The first “Building Hope” panel discussion will focus on activism. This photo was taken by The Uptown Observer Founder and Editor-in-Chief Daniel Thompson at the Christopher Columbus statue in the city during a protest over the summer.

KENOSHA ⸺ The Kenosha County Dems and Lifecourse Initiative for Healthy Families are partnering for a panel series, hoping to further important conversations.

The point of the panel series, called “Building Hope: Your Voice Matters,” is to get more voices heard. The series especially focuses on encouraging those from communities that have felt stifled to speak up.

Uptown Observer Founder and Editor-in-Chief Daniel Thompson discusses the new panel series, “Building Hope: Your Voice Matters”, organized by the Kenosha County Democratic Party and Lifecourse Initiative for Healthy Families.

Kenosha County Democratic Party Chair Lori Hawkins states that many residents “have excellent ideas.”

And Kenoshans having safe and happy families is also a common goal among different groups.

However, historically, officials have overlooked input from certain segments of the population.

The first panel, taking place 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. Wednesday, will focus on the topic “The Impact of Community Activism,” with panelists Billy Violet, Proche Bennett-Bey and Alvin D. Owens.

The Kenosha County Democratic Party will livestream the panel on its Facebook page

Note: Please watch the video embedded above for the full conversation between the Observer, Robinson and Hawkins on the panel series. 
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A platform for the unheard

“LIHF and the KCDP decided to partner on this project in order to provide a platform for people in the Kenosha community who are working to address systemic racism and to also create a heightened awareness of the lifelong effects of racism,” a joint released statement from the two entities stated.

“Our panelists will come from a variety of backgrounds and life experiences. The purpose is to get to know one another in our community and to grow in unity through this experience.”

‘We all want peace’

For Robinson, it’s clear that “we all want peace”.

“So when we sit down and you talk to the people with different points of view, we all have that same goal, and matter,” Robinson said.

Bring those who have been silent into conversations and “you have a new synergy and new strategies or approach.”

“Sometimes we’ve been in Kenosha doing the same things over and over, and then they are fighting about why we haven’t seen change,” Robinson said.

Strong solutions can come from bringing more people to the table.

“There are some powerful, brainstorming concerns and issues that we can apply to our current situation right now,” Robinson said. “And a lot of that comes from our youth.”

Hawkins added that the series will be a “safe space” for people to come with ideas. 

Rating: 1 out of 5.

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Daniel Thompson is an independent journalist and the founder of The Uptown Observer based in the Kenosha, Wis., area. He started in journalism at the Western Nebraska Observer in 2012 and, most notably,...