Alessandra Hernando: showing surface-level support for causes is not enough

July 6, 2022 /

Alessandra Hernando, joined the organization Loud for Tomorrow because she wanted to make a change in her community.

Hernando was born in Tuguegarao, Philippines, and she came to America at the age of six. Being raised by a single mother, they moved around towns frequently looking for jobs. During elementary school, her mom was also going to school and she remembers the moments when her mom would study for her exams late at night while she was asleep in the same room. Her mom had a job while going to school, but there was a time when they had to move with her cousins because they couldn’t afford to pay for rent.

 After a few years of living with them, her mom continued her education and got her LVN certificate. They moved into their first home during her  junior year. While this was a success story, she was often alone because her mom was always busy.

One day she took a trip to Cesar Chavez National Park where she met the descendants of Cesar Chavez himself. They spoke about the United Farm Workers movement and showed her where Chavez did most of his work. 

“From there, I learned the value of dedication as Chavez dedicated his life to the cause as said by Chavez, ‘Only by giving our lives do we find life’. The trip was really inspiring and left a mark on me that I wanted to do more for the community,” said Hernando. “I learned that showing surface-level support for causes is not enough. I did not want to continue tolerating the horrible systems that are in our community, so I joined Loud for Tomorrow.”

She learned about the organization, Loud for Tomorrow, from a friend who went to Cesar Chavez High School and told her about the club at their school, and she saw their Instagram and was interested. 

“It was nice to have a youth-led activist group in a small town since most of the action happens in Northern and Southern California. Loud for Tomorrow offered ways to help young people give back to the community. I wanted to involve myself in the community and Loud for Tomorrow helps the community by offering a voice for the youth,” said Hernando.

Loud for Tomorrow emphasizes youth engagement in the community and this is one of the reasons Hernando decided to join. 

“I did not care about important issues during my freshman year, which wasn’t unusual since most kids my age didn’t care either. However, I learned throughout the years that if I did not engage my voice, problems will keep perpetuating,” explained Hernando. “Loud for Tomorrow created youth involvement by having voter registration booths on high school campuses and actively posting on Instagram.”

Hernando helps the community in various ways by joining focus groups on Zooms for mental health awareness,  participates in rally campaigns in front of City Hall, and does park clean-ups and event set-ups. 

“Every time I volunteered, I got to meet new people and also get a sense of how big and real movements are. For example, when I participated in the rally campaign for rent control in front of city hall, seeing a News team come by and interview people while also seeing the mayor was surreal,” said Hernando. “It validates my hard work because seeing the publicity that our causes are gaining further motivates me more to keep on helping the community. Verbally supporting something doesn’t satisfy me enough, so I get excited when volunteering because I can see real change happen.”

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