This semester, FLY had a unique opportunity to expand the reach of our longest-running program to youth who might otherwise have been excluded from participating.

Our partners at Peninsula High School in Burlingame asked us to work with them to develop a law class in Spanish for the San Mateo Union High School School District’s Bridge Program. The class would serve students who had recently moved to the U.S. and were learning English during their senior year. 

Our San Mateo County staff has strong Spanish language skills, and with the help of our Law Program volunteers, they translated our entire legal education curriculum including the presentations and written materials. 

Launching a new class virtually in a different language was exactly the kind of challenge that excites us at FLY. The students in our first class were supportive, patient, and eager to learn from us, and we are just as eager to learn from them! We now have amazing stories and a wealth of data to help us understand how this class could expand and enhance our services to other underserved communities. 

When we spoke to one of our staff members who taught the class, she told us of an especially memorable moment during an ice breaker game. While music was being played in the background, “En El Mar” by La Sonora Matancera came on. Everyone was smiling and laughing, multiple students were all conversing at the same time, and for that moment it almost felt like the class wasn’t virtual at all

It felt like they were having the class in person! It was amazing to see all the youth come alive and the fact that a song about how life is more beautiful and happy by the sea came on at that exact moment felt so serendipitous. 

The photo above is from the last class of the semester. It’s a testament to everyone involved—FLY staff and volunteers, the school district staff, and our students—that the youth are interested in continuing with FLY through our Leadership Training Program

Thank you for your support that allows FLY to continue to innovate in ways that make change possible for young people and our communities.