The following was written by Josh Barker, a member of the Convention of States Teens group in Georgia.
Young people are the future leaders of this nation. The decisions they make, the questions they ask, and the answers they get will change the world. They won’t be kids forever. The Convention of States Teens of Georgia (COST) is working on behalf of the Convention of States movement to get the message out to young people. Whether it’s making speeches at schools, churches, public events, or even just talking to their friends about it, they’re making a difference.
However, recently they tried a new idea: a dance. The idea was pretty simple -- have a dance at a church or the local community center, talk about the Convention of States Project, and donate the funds towards the national movement. They used social media to put the event online and promote it to Middle and High School students.
The dance was held at the Howard Community Center in North Macon. The theme was the Mid-Summer Night’s dream. The decorating crew placed mason jars with candles throughout the room, white Christmas lights through the chandeliers and on the floor, and greenery over everything. Glow sticks were also given out about halfway through the dance.
There were several activities besides dancing, including a dessert competition and a limbo competition.
About an hour and a half into the dance, Browning Sandusky, the local teen captain, explained what the Convention of States movement is. After his speech, several people signed up to join the movement.
Overall, the dance raised $720. However, thanks to the generosity of an anonymous donor who matched the funds raised, a total of $1,440 was donated to the national organization.
Browning Sandusky said that his favorite thing about the dance was that so many people came. “It was great to see the support of the COS movement, and it really spread the word of it out there.” He said that it was “definitely worth the effort,” and he hopes to have another dance in the near future.
Amelia Boland, one of the event’s teen organizers, agreed. “My favorite part of the dance was when Browning Sandusky gave a speech about Convention of States, and almost 100 teenagers heard about the movement and responded with support.”
Boland encouraged anyone thinking about hosting a similar event to give it a try. She said that the hardest part is “setting a date and making it happen.” However, with the right crew and dedication, any dance can come together perfectly. “Hosting the event was surprisingly simple when everyone came together to work toward a common goal. Some of our volunteers were excellent bakers and brought food, some of our volunteers helped with decorating, everyone invited friends, and it worked out beautifully.” She said that because everyone worked together they could add extra “mini-events” like the limbo and dessert baking competition. She says that COST loves brainstorming for future events. “We are planning to host more events soon. We expect opportunities for events to broaden as our group continues to grow.”
Overall, Boland says it was a success. “Almost 100 people are now familiar with Article Five and received pocket Constitutions. Many of the teens who participated expressed interest and support for the movement, and it was a great night of fellowship for volunteers and participants.”