Sonoma county suffered greatly from fires that raged through the community. Although the fires are long over, the long-term economic implications and the instability that it has created for many, continues to grow.
Hosted at Sonoma State University, in collaboration with 10,000 Degrees, a leading college success nonprofit in California, which helps students from low-income backgrounds get to and through college, we engaged their students impacted by the fire to envision the future of Sonoma.
The students reported that their wish for Sonoma was to find affordable housing, affordable childcare and affordable Internet. They asked for support to find pathways to careers, not to live pay check to pay check. Their biggest barrier is access to reliable, convenient and safe public transportation.
Interestingly, this group of students was particularly proud of their community, citing tight family ties and a strong desire to give back to their community.
In the bright, welcoming, collaborative workspace set up for students by 10,000 Degrees, we are primed to help their youth develop their ideas and initiatives in Sonoma.