%s1 / %s2

We're working on a new version of PRX. Want a sneak peek?

Playlist: KUOW's RadioActive Youth Media's Portfolio

 Credit:
No text

Featured

For Black Boys: "You Are Beautiful"

From KUOW's RadioActive Youth Media | 05:43

“In a place that will never understand you are amazing, in a place that will put fire to you then say you are callous, they will burn you then say you are reckless ... I tell you, you are beautiful, you are grand, you are too permanent to be unloved."

Seattle Youth Poet Laureate Leija Farr reads her poem "For Black Boys" and talks with Black men and boys about self love.

Leija_small

“Black boys bleed every month.”

Those words came to Leija Farr as she saw her dad, enraged, watching the news of another police shooting of a black man.

Farr wrote the poem “For Black Boys” in response to this moment, and it won her the title of Seattle’s first youth poet laureate.

Her work is an ode to black men and boys. In this segment, Farr reads her powerful poem and interviews black men in her life about how they practice loving themselves.

Her father, Jamal Farr, told her, love is a way "to help make ourselves stronger, to help make ourselves be prepared for anything that happens, and to know that you're not out here by yourself."

In a place that will never understand you are amazing, in a place that will put fire to you then say you are callous, they will burn you then say you are reckless, some mothers won’t tell you because they think it is feminine and they want you to prepare for a battlefield your whole life but I tell you, you are beautiful, you are grand, you are too permanent to be unloved. – 'For Black Boys'

RadioActive Youth Media is KUOW's program for youth age 16-20ish. Listen to RadioActive stories, subscribe to the RadioActive podcast and stay in touch on Facebook and Twitter.


How Do You Flirt? Seattleites Answer Way Too Personal Questions

From KUOW's RadioActive Youth Media | 12:06

How do you flirt?

How will you die?

Who is your arch nemesis?

RadioActive descended on several places around in the Seattle area to ask people these uncomfortable questions.

“I will die being hit by a car because I fail to look both ways crossing the street to the downtown Nordstrom,” one woman said.

One man’s hunch was far more gut wrenching. Listen for his answer at minute 7:35.

Picturecropped_small How do you flirt? How will you die? Who is your arch nemesis? RadioActive descended on several places around in the Seattle area to ask people these uncomfortable questions. “I will die being hit by a car because I fail to look both ways crossing the street to the downtown Nordstrom,” one woman said. One man’s hunch was far more gut wrenching. Listen for his answer at minute 7:35.

Overcoming Hurdles To Be First In His Family To Go To College

From KUOW's RadioActive Youth Media | 05:27

"I visualize the race. All I’m thinking about is just silence. Dead silence.

"Then the gun goes off. I'm just trying to get to the finish line as quick as possible."

Christapherson Grant's life revolves around track. Since he was a high school freshman, his dream was to win a Washington state championship in track. This year, he achieved his dream, but he had to jump over a lot more than track hurdles to get there.

Chris_running_-_jacobostlund_small "I visualize the race. All I’m thinking about is just silence. Dead silence. "Then the gun goes off. I'm just trying to get to the finish line as quick as possible." Christapherson Grant's life revolves around track. Since he was a high school freshman, his dream was to win a Washington state championship in track. This year, he achieved his dream, but he had to jump over a lot more than track hurdles to get there.

Daniel's Suicide: How One Ellensburg Family Copes

From KUOW's RadioActive Youth Media | Part of the RadioActive: Summer 2015 series | 05:08

In a park in Ellensburg, a tree grows beside a small stream. Daniel Curtis DeHollander’s ashes lie beneath the roots.

DeHollander committed suicide here last July at age 18, just after graduating from high school. The tree is his memorial site.

DeHollander was a friend of mine, and like many, I've been trying to make sense of his death.

Most people don’t want to talk about death, especially suicide. And yet suicide is the third leading cause of death for youth. Rural teens like Daniel DeHollander are nearly twice as likely as urban teens to commit suicide, according to a recent medical study.

Daniel_senior_photo_wide_small In a park in Ellensburg, a tree grows beside a small stream. Daniel Curtis DeHollander’s ashes lie beneath the roots. DeHollander committed suicide here last July at age 18, just after graduating from high school. The tree is his memorial site. DeHollander was a friend of mine, and like many, I've been trying to make sense of his death. Most people don’t want to talk about death, especially suicide. And yet suicide is the third leading cause of death for youth. Rural teens like Daniel DeHollander are nearly twice as likely as urban teens to commit suicide, according to a recent medical study.

'Helping My People': 17-Year-Old Farmworker Becomes A Labor Activist

From KUOW's RadioActive Youth Media | Part of the RadioActive: Summer 2015 series | 03:59

Alicia Santos started picking strawberries when she was 7 years old. Her mother was working at Hayton Farms in Skagit County, so Alicia went along.

She stayed in the row for the whole day but didn't make much effort. "I feel like, why am I even picking? It's so hot!"

Now at age 17, Santos still works in the fields of Skagit County, along with just about everyone in her community. She's trying to help others like her by organizing for better working conditions.

Boycott_march_small Alicia Santos started picking strawberries when she was 7 years old. Her mother was working at Hayton Farms in Skagit County, so Alicia went along. She stayed in the row for the whole day but didn't make much effort. "I feel like, why am I even picking? It's so hot!" Now at age 17, Santos still works in the fields of Skagit County, along with just about everyone in her community. She's trying to help others like her by organizing for better working conditions.

Using White Privilege To Fight Racism: A Young Activist's Dream

From KUOW's RadioActive Youth Media | Part of the RadioActive: Summer 2015 series | 04:29

Anelise Moon-Schruder, 24, is part of a movement of white people who are coming together to reflect on their privilege. As a young woman raised in a low-income family, she wants more people like her to get involved.

Anelise_small Anelise Moon-Schruder, 24, is part of a movement of white people who are coming together to reflect on their privilege. As a young woman raised in a low-income family, she wants more people like her to get involved.

RadioActive's Guide To Making Friends In New Places

From KUOW's RadioActive Youth Media | 14:54

In this month's podcast, we focus on the people you lean on year round: your friends! We hear what friendship means to preschoolers and retired people and a timeless story of teenage adventure.

Plus, you don't want to miss our story about one girl's unusual attempt to make friends in a new place.

RadioActive is KUOW's program for high school students. Listen to RadioActive stories, subscribe to the RadioActive podcast and stay in touch on Facebook and Twitter.

Kendraneedsfriendscrop_small In this month's podcast, we focus on the people you lean on year round: your friends! We hear what friendship means to preschoolers and retired people and a timeless story of teenage adventure. Plus, you don't want to miss our story about one girl's unusual attempt to make friends in a new place. RadioActive is KUOW's program for high school students. Listen to RadioActive stories, subscribe to the RadioActive podcast and stay in touch on Facebook and Twitter.

Why This Teen Stopped Hiding Her Dad's Abuse

From KUOW's RadioActive Youth Media | Part of the RadioActive Fall 2014 series | 06:03

Noel Gasca explores the story of the seemingly perfect girl next door.

Ivy_graduation_crop_small

As a senior at Lake Stevens High School, Ivy Jacobsen appeared confident. Blonde, popular, and a varsity athlete, her peers labeled her as the perfect girl next door. But Jacobsen said there was a time when she wasn't so confident. 

"I was very insecure. I had many friends but I was still really shy," Jacobsen said. "I wasn't really comfortable with who I was, body-wise."

During middle school, Jacobsen's classmates picked on her. One of her former teachers, Larry Palmer, remembers how different she was from other kids. "She was a little bit more naive. You got the impression that she'd had a very sheltered life," he said.

As a child, Jacobsen spent a lot of time with her father. He taught her how to cook, clean, ski, snowboard and play basketball, her favorite sport.

Their apparent bond masked a secret that haunted Jacobsen for years. She was only allowed to have certain numbers on her cell phone. She couldn't have an email account, and she couldn't use the Internet.

Her wardrobe was even dictated by her father. She wasn't allowed to wear tight jeans, or anything "girly." When she had to dress up for basketball events, Jacobsen said her dad would "have to be with" her at the store. "I'd have to try on every article of clothing and get his approval. It was horrid because I couldn't ever wear what I wanted to wear," she said.

But Jacobsen acted like everything was normal. "I was roleplaying," she said. "I was hiding behind a story, hiding behind what my dad was doing to me."

What Jacobsen's father was doing was sexually abusing her, from the time she was in the sixth grade. The abuse went on for five years, until Jacobsen told her best friend during her sophomore year.

The abuse affected every part of Jacobsen's life, including what she loved most -- the thing that bonded her and her father the most -- basketball.

"In order for me to get new basketball shoes, I'd have to do certain things for him, sexually," Jacobsen said.  

Jenifer Jacobsen, her mother, wrote by email that she didn't know her daughter was being sexually abused.

"For a long time, Ivy was controlled by her dad," she said in an email. " I did not know that this was happening, so I'm sure you could imagine how I felt.  She felt freedom for the first time. I allowed her to be who she wanted to be, to act like a kid and a teenager. She was able to dress in her style, wear makeup and style her hair.  I did not realize how much control he had."  

Her ex-husband kept mother and daughter apart. The two couldn't even do things like grocery shopping together.

A few days after that conversation with her friend, Jacobsen's dad was arrested. Jacobsen was terrified that coming forward would tear her family apart, but she knew she was doing the right thing.

Her story is uncommon: 86 percent of sexually abused children don't report their abuse .

Jacobsen went on to do something unimaginable, yet necessary for her freedom: testify against her father in court.

When Jacobsen saw her father on the stand, she "literally felt naked." And she would have to get used to that feeling of intense vulnerability. She went on to testify against her father two more times over 18 months during her sophomore and junior years of high school.

In July 2013, after three separate trials, Jacobsen's father was convicted of rape of a child and child molestation. He's currently serving 16 years in prison. 

After the last trial, Jacobsen's process of rebuilding her life began. "My main thing was to get my body back," she recalled. "I realized, wow, I can go shopping! I can wear what I want to wear. I can be me.'"

"Junior and senior year was totally about me becoming Ivy," she said.

Soon Jacobsen was getting ready to graduate from Lake Stevens High School. Of 500 students in her graduating class, she was selected as one of the speakers for graduation.

She started writing her graduation speech about pursuing and achieving dreams, but then realized it was too ordinary. She threw the speech away. She knew it wasn't what she was supposed to write.

She had already told her close friends about her past, but there were going to be 6,000 people at graduation. When the big day came Jacobsen was nervous, because she was about to tell all those people what happened to her. 

In Jacobsen's speech, she started talking about a girl she knew:

"There was this girl. She was manipulated at a young age. She could only wear certain things to school, and could only talk to particular people.

"She was socially and culturally inept. Also, behind the scenes, her father had started to rape her when she was in the sixth grade.

"She did not know that what he was doing was wrong. Last July 15, her father was finally put into prison.

"Where is this girl now? She is standing before all of you. I am that girl."

Today, Jacobsen is working three jobs and taking online classes through Everett Community College. She has moved into a place of her own. She's writing a book about her experience. She's making her own decisions based on what she wants.

Jacobsen's mother, Jenifer Jacobsen, said that if her daughter hadn't come forward, they'd still be in the same awful situation today. "She's an inspiration to many, but she is truly my hero."  

I Was An Unlikely Homeschooled Student

From KUOW's RadioActive Youth Media | Part of the KUOW's RadioActive Youth Media Features series | 05:03

Elinor Jones Toutant was homeschooled for most of her education, even though her family isn't one you'd expect to make that choice.

Radio_active_winter_2016_006_small

Even though she didn't attend traditional school for very long, Elinor Jones Toutant didn't enjoy the little she attended. When she was in kindergarten, there were mornings she would flat out refuse to go to school. 
When her parents decided to give her the option to take a break and stay home, Elinor was overjoyed. 
One thing you should know: Elinor's family is not one you would expect to make that choice.