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Celebrating 16 years of Service: Time For Change Gala Will Salute Advocates

LOS ANGELES, CA- Time for Change Foundation’s (TFCF) 2018 Advocates of the Year Award honors those individuals whose strengths and courage amplifies the voices of change and criminal justice reform in their respective communities.  This year among the advocates being honored, Ms. Kim Carter is pleased to honor Jayda Rasberry and Mianta McKnight. 

Both of these young ladies give me so much hope,” Kim Carter, Founder of Time for Change Foundation, stated. “We know that change will only come when those most impacted by the harmful effects of mass incarceration are at the helm leading the efforts for reform.”

Jayda Rasberry is from Los Angeles. She is in her late twenties, has 5 younger siblings, and a whole host of cousins, nieces, and nephews. She was raised by her grandmother who loved her unconditionally and instilled in her what it takes to be a productive citizen. In 2006 she was sentenced to Valley State Prison for Women where she would spend six years of her life. Since her release in 2012 she has been to Sacramento to speak about medical negligence and reducing the prison population with alternatives. In 2014 she became an organizer with Dignity and Power Now. She is out 5 days a week educating community members and making them aware of what is happening behind jail walls. As a formerly incarcerated person and a queer woman of color she believes that it is important to be a voice of change in directly impacted communities. She has lived the harsh realities of what happens behind the walls of prison and strongly believes that it is her duty to fight and to be a voice for people who are incarcerated.

Mianta McKnight is a formerly incarcerated juvenile offender tried as an adult who is passionate about incarcerated women. She knows firsthand what the prion experience is like since she served 18 years and 1 day on a 15 year to life sentence and essentially grew up within the prison industrial complex. As a fellow for Justice Now and activist for social change, she is dedicated to challenging inhumane conditions and being a voice for those who are unable to speak for themselves. She attends SFSU and is majoring in dance, which she plans to use to work along with holistic medicine to promote longevity, self-awareness, and self-care.

Other Honorees include: Dr. Carolyn Eggleston with the Community Education Champion Award, Jordyn Rivera with the Humanitarian Award, Bobby Barzi with the “Ramos Family Spirit of Compassion” Award, Virginia Blumenthal with the Women’s Empowerment Award, Dr. Harvey Nurick with the Dynamic Duo Award, Cedar House with the Community Champion Award, and Mitla Café with the Unsung Hero Award.

Time for Change Foundation’s 16th Year Anniversary Gala will take place on Friday, April 13th , at the Doubletree Hotel by Hilton in Ontario, CA from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. To support TFCF’s efforts to help homeless women and children become self-sufficient, thriving members of society you can become a sponsor, purchase an ad in the event program book or purchase a Gala ticket.  To purchase tickets for the event or to become a sponsor and increase your business’ visibility in the community, please visit our website www.TimeForChangeFoundation.org or contact Vanessa Perez at (909) 886-2994 or by email at vperez@timeforchangefoundation.org.

Time for Change Foundation empowers disenfranchised, low-income individuals and families by building leadership through evidence-based programs and housing to create self-sufficiency and thriving communities. We accept all forms of donations. To see how you can help make a difference visit us on the web at www.TimeForChangeFoundation.org.

“But I Didn’t Mean To!”

Lou Coleman-Yeboah

Lou Coleman-Yeboah

By Lou Coleman-Yeboah

Sure, you did! You knew what you was about to do was wrong, but you did it anyway. So what do you mean you didn’t mean to? What kind of fool do you think God is? Do you think you can do something that he says is wrong and you won’t have consequences in your life? Scripture is clear: “Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows this he will also reap. Doing right is not an option in the Christian life. James says in [James 4:17] “Anyone who knows the good he ought to do and doesn’t do it, Sins. No matter what others do, you know what you have to do. You cannot afford to live the life that people are living simply because it is the acceptable thing to do. I tell you “Fools rush in where angels fear to tread””Look before you leap.”

Listen, the only way to grow is to take full responsibility for your actions. Scripture clearly shows that believers sin and must take responsibility for their own thoughts and actions. It is far better and far more biblical to say, “I sinned and I take full personal responsibility for all my thoughts, words and deeds. I cannot blame my circumstances, my friends, my loved ones, the world, my flesh, the power of sin within me, or even the devil. I must admit that I chose to sin and I confess it. I did it, no one else made it me do it. Now I must face the consequences.” 

What does this mean? It means, in the final analysis, you do right because it’s right to do right. Besides, you don’t want to mess around with God. God is a consuming fire!  “The Lord’s anger burned against Uzzah because of his irreverent act; therefore God struck him down and he died there beside the ark of God.” [2 Samuel 6:7].  He died, instantly. Why? Because he did wrong when he knew to do right. The Bible is full of stories like this. Remember the golden calf incident at Mt. Sinai, recorded in [Exodus 32]? Only because Moses pleaded with God to remember his covenant mercy did God decide not to destroy the entire nation of Israel after they offered unacceptable worship, [doing wrong when you know to do right], by making an image of him in the form of a cud-chewing stud. Even after Moses pleaded with God, they still didn’t get off scot free, about 3000 died and the rest was struck with a plague. When you know to do right, do it!

The underlying: A wheelbarrow doesn’t choose which direction it will go.  It moves in whatever direction the person pushing it decides is best.  A wheelbarrow doesn’t argue with the person pushing it or try to choose its own path.  A wheelbarrow simply goes where the person pushing directs. With God’s Spirit controlling us, we don’t have to try to do the right things.  We don’t have to try to obey God’s commands. We don’t have to try to guess which direction God wants us to go. [Ezekiel 36:27] says, “And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws.”  These verses were written to the nation of Israel, but God’s promise applies to all who claim Him as God.  The message in this verse is that God has placed His Spirit in each of His children and this Spirit will move us to do right and to obey God.  God’s Holy Spirit will guide us in the direction that God knows is best for us. And when the Spirit moves us, it is up to us to obey.  It is up to us to go in the direction in which He is moving us.  The Holy Spirit will always move us in the right direction.  He will always move us to obey God and do God’s will.  We don’t have to move ourselves [make ourselves go in the right direction].  We simply need to allow God’s Spirit to move us in the direction that God know is best for us.

“But we pray to God that you may not do wrong—not that we may appear to have met the test, but that you may do what is right, though we may seem to have failed.” [2Corinthians 13:7].

May God richly bless you as you read these words. It is my sincere desire that all who read them may be enriched “

And this is my prayer,” Paul wrote, “that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness.” [Philippians 1:9]

 

Assemblymember Reyes Sends 25 Students to the State Capitol

SAN BERNARDINO, CA – On February 21,, Assemblymember Eloise Gómez Reyes (D-San Bernardino) hosted the 47thAssemblyDistrict Young Legislators on their inaugural Sacramento Trip to the State Capitol. Students who participated attend San Bernardino City Unified School District, Colton Joint Unified School District, Fontana Unified School District, and Rialto Unified School District.

The students who were afforded the opportunity included: Abigail Menara, Adamaris Zamora, Adriana Golding, Amy Vasquez, Andres Torres, Ariel Ideishi, Ashley Garcia, Bryanna Gonzalez, Daniella Mora, Elizabeth Rubio, Eunice Molina, Gabriel Macias, Gabriela Vasquez, Guadalupe Tellez, Jacqui Ochoa, Jasmin Ponce, Jayleska Johnson, Josaline Moran, Joshua Lechega, Karen Rojas, Leslie Tapia, Manny Medrano, Sahvannah Rodriguez, Valarie Valero and Xiomara Thompson.

During the visit, the Young Legislators attended an Assembly floor session, toured the State Capitol, visited the State Library, participated in a meet and greet with State Legislators, a panel discussion with Assembly Fellows and professional staff, and presented legislative proposals to benefit San Bernardino County youth.

“Our young people are the next generation of leaders that will contend with the emerging challenges facing our region and state for years to come.  That is why it is so important they are engaged in their community and get a firsthand experience of the public policy making process,” said Assemblymember Reyes.

The Young Legislators is a yearlong program to provide high school students living in the 47th District with leadership development training and an opportunity to discuss important youth related issues occurring in the community. Assemblymember Reyes is currently accepting applications for the next class of Young Legislators on her website at www.asm.ca.gov/reyes.