Los Angeles, CA–Alizah Silver is the founder of the Love Activists, a 501c3 non-profit educational program. Through her role as a teacher at KIPP Empower Academy in South Central, she works with her students to create educational content promoting social change through art and activism.
The Love Activists held their first community event Aug. 7 at the Sole Folks new art lab on Crenshaw near Leimert Park. These local Los Angeles youth expressed themselves through song and dance and premiered their music video, “Eracism.”
“When I first moved to California a dream of mine for many years was teaching and tutoring in Topanga Canyon. The kids I was working with ate organic foods, played every instrument and had rock climbing lessons,” Silver detailed. “I would go to East LA and South Central and notice how children were experiencing a completely different reality.”
Silver is native of New York, who was born in Manhattan and attended school in Brooklyn. In High School, she moved to a small town in Mandeville, Louisiana. It was here, Silver says, that she soon came to understand that the educational system, as well as our government and police force, was twisted.
“I saw extreme racism for the first time, a segregated school, police corruption and the hatred and ignorance of many white people in the South,” Silver detailed. “ I have devoted my life to learning about the impacts of systemic racism and oppression on our youth and ways to empower our youth to become leaders.”
In 2020, The Silver and the Love Activists created the song “Eracism” and filmed a music video starring the students. Silver also wrote and published a children’s book during the George Floyd protests. Silver says she is focused on providing her students tools of mindfulness during the development of their social and emotional skills.
During the event, some of the Love Activists youth sold their own products from lemonade, to nail polish and parents enjoyed African inspired dance performances by the youth led by Misty Powell of Wholistic Healing Arts.
Patrick Henry Johnson, a local renowned painter and muralist, also stopped by and shared the story behind one of his favorite murals. He also gave a short presentation to the youth on race as a social construct.
One of the most special parts of the event, was when the Love Activists performed their song “Eracism” and many saw the music video for the first time. The youth also did a live reading of Silver’s book, “The Love Activists Compassionate Leaders and Systemic Change.” The main focus of the event was mindfulness and kids as well as the audience received a short session of meditation and singing bowl healing.
“We create opportunities for our kids to be compassionate leaders and activists in their communities,” Silver shared.