June 02, 2020 in Local Government and Civic Engagement

Be the Change You Want to See

Yesterday, CCYP refrained from posting on social media in observance of #blackouttuesday, #theshowmustbepaused, and other similar efforts to rally behind and amplify voices of color. The day was one of introspection. Of standing back. Of listening. But we want to leave no doubt that CCYP stands with our colleagues, friends, and neighbors of color, on the Cape and nationwide. We grieve deeply for the senseless loss of human life. We unequivocally condemn these all-too-frequent incidents of racial violence and discrimination that plague our country and our communities. We know we have to do better.

As an organization, we are committed to using our platform as an agent for good, for community-building, and for promotion of opportunity for all. Looking ahead, we know that there is still much work to be done. Change starts with each of us, individually and locally. With this in mind, CCYP will be thoughtfully and honestly looking at how we as an organization can better support our young workers of color here on Cape Cod. We will be addressing, head-on, bias within CCYP as an organization. And we will work on an ongoing basis to ensure that our leadership and volunteer makeup is representative of the community. We know this is not enough. But it is a start.

During a time of such uncertainty and upheaval, we find ourselves leaning on one of CCYP's most integral values as an organization: the idea that civic engagement and local, individual action make our community a better place. We urge all who are moved to action right now to consider this: your engagement at the LOCAL level, in government, volunteerism, and community service, is one of the most significant ways to effect positive change. Use your vote, every. single. election. Seek out an elected or appointed role in your town government. Make your voice heard. Engage in respectful discourse and seek out perspectives that may be different from yours. Run for something. Be the change you want to see. Let’s take this time to envision the people, the organizations, the community we want to be – and then take bold, intentional, and unrelenting action to make it so.

CCYP is here to do this work, because the future of our community depends on it. We hope you will join us.

With gratitude,

Lauren Barker, CCYP CEO

How to Help

This is by no means an exhaustive list, and we encourage you to seek out your own meaningful ways to contribute.

Support grass roots organizations and businesses that support black people and people of color. Locally, Cape Cod-based business B Free Coaching & Wellness will be providing racial healing workshops free of charge for people of color. To contribute, make a donation at or

Cape Cod's chapter of the NAACP has been working to end racial discrimination on Cape Cod and beyond since 1961.

Support or volunteer with organizations committed to racial equity. EforAll (Entrepreneurship for All) is one such organization, providing entrepreneurial training, tools, and resources for underrepresented communities across Massachusetts (including on Cape Cod).

No Place for Hate is a community organization working to build bridges, combat bias, and promote respect for all people through advocacy and education. Learn more via the Falmouth chapter, or Barnstable chapter.

Learn how you can become more involved locally through civic engagement and volunteerism. There are so many opportunities to step up and be part of the process to ensure that Cape Cod is an inclusive, vibrant community now, and in the future. Volunteer, get involved, and do what you can - no matter how small the action seems, know that YOU have the power as an individual to make a difference, especially at the local level.