Oct 5, 2020 6:00pm

Youth in Media: Youth Activism in Media Outreach for No Minor Sale

Hello, I’m Rhyan Cordova and I am a senior at Valencia High School in Los Lunas. I’m a part of Evolvement; Evolvement is a youth-led movement promoting a healthier and tobacco- free New Mexico. I’ve been in this program for three years but this is my first year on the leadership team. In the time I’ve been in Evolvement, I’ve both attended and spoke at a few conferences on behalf of Evolvement.

Both the media and getting our message out via this platform are important because we are able to spread what and why Evolvement exists for exactly. We are able to provide a clear, straightforward discussion with our audience. The ability to spread our message via the media is a great way to channel our message on a wide scale and to spread awareness.

No Minor Sale is a campaign to stop the illegal sale of tobacco to minors. While being a part of Evolvement and speaking on behalf of No Minor Sale, I have had the opportunity to spread awareness through my appearance on TV, this was my first time speaking into front of so many people and I was so nervous.  After that experiences I wanted to continue with this work but with more confidence and that’s what I did. I was able to present at the 2020 NM ACTion Conference speaking on subjects of youth advocating through our No Minor Sale and 24/7 campaigns. Some conferences are not televised but we continue to spread and show awareness on all forms of media. It is important to keep spreading awareness because change begins with you, so you can continue to spread awareness.

Speaking to the media provides the youth with skills such as confidence, enthusiasm, the ability to engage and learn stress management. These skills are grown over time and don’t show up overnight as you practice these skills over and over again. While working with Evolvement, I have learned just how important the media is to the spread of awareness and education to those who may not know the information Evolvement has collected from the public. When students become more involved in the media, they could grow as people but also become more prepared for the next phase of their life because of the skills they have come to grow. We should emphasize media as a means to spread awareness because in this form we are able to create the platform to advocate the means of Evolvement, continue with prevention efforts and create change.

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