Youth Voices is working with students from the Los Angeles River School to re-imagine the L.A. River and the surrounding communities as part of the Northeast Los Angelels Riverfront Collaborative. The students have formed teams to explore and investigate their communities, map assets, collect and share stories, data and community input for their projects. All the while they are learning and expanding their knowledge of digital media and civic engagement. Follow their work here and on Instagram and Twitter by using #kcetyv.

RaulDMZ Team Members

Raul Demetrio
David Hernandez
Max Zarco

What is something you want to improve in your neighborhood?
We want to improve the vacant lot on 3450 Fletcher Drive, Los Angeles, CA 90065-2916. Our goal is to make that lot a dog park so all the local neighbors can enjoy a day with their dog. This will make the community closer as a whole.

Why is it important to improve this aspect of your neighborhood?
This is important to us because that lot has been one giant trash can for the community. It's hard to take pride in your community when there's a vacant lot that is such as eyesore. People in the community have been thinking to themselves, "someone else will take care of it." That someone else is us.

Where would you go in your neighborhood to investigate and document this issue?
We will visit the lot and take pictures so we can show other people who don't know the lot that well. After that we will go to local meeting in the neighborhood so we can spread the word of the idea and as well get the community support.

Who is affected by this issue in your neighborhood, and how would things change for them once you've improved the situation?
The local neighbors have dogs in all sizes but they don't have a large yard for them to run around. When the empty lot gets clean and becomes a more friendly place, neighbors can form a better bond with their dogs and the dogs can socialize with other dogs as well.

What are two possible ways that you can take action towards solving this issue?
The first thing is to get a community expert to back us up with the idea then get the community support.

Aerial view of the vacant lot from Google Maps

Aerial view of a possible design for a dog park