2013 On The Hill Summit

Screen Shot 2013-11-02 at 10.40.48 AMJack and Jill of America, Inc. held its third Biennial On the Hill Summit on September 14-17, 2013. Teens, tweens and parents from across the country went to Washington, DC to participate in this centerpiece of our Legislative Advocacy program. This year marked the 50th anniversaries of both the March on Washington and the Birmingham bombing, events central to Jack and Jill’s advocacy efforts in programming and service. Our legislative priorities this year included healthcare, education, juvenile justice and gun violence prevention.

Boston Chapter’s Legislative Chair and Teen President attended the summit along with over 500 Jack and Jill teens. The summit provided an opportunity for Mothers and Teens to meet with elected officials and advocate for our policy issues as a unified voice. The Boston delegates met with their US representative, Congressman Michael Capuano, and US Senator Elizabeth Warren, as well as their respective staffs. They also attended a small business luncheon with Congresswoman Terri Sewell (D-AL). Congresswoman Sewell took the lead around the passage of legislation to award the Congressional Gold Medal to Carole Robertson, a Jack and Jill teen killed in the 1963 Birmingham bombing. Other noteworthy events included a “Remembering Trayvon” panel discussion, a number of legislative workshops, the MLK Memorial Teen Candlelight Walk, a political science lecture and tour at Howard University, a Library of Congress tour, a conversation with Congressman John Lewis, and the Capitol Reception and Awards Ceremony. Awardees included Congressman James Clyburn (D-SC), Congressman Gregory Meeks (D-NY), Congresswoman Terri Sewell (D-AL), Honorable Nicole Y. Lamb Hale, and Marian Wright Edelman.
The teens learned more about their roles as leaders in the community and the nation and the power of their voices. This is one of the Jack and Jill activities that helps to build the leadership skills and intellectual growth that we envision for all of our youth.