In this time of change in Appalachia’s economy, we’ve heard from a lot of leaders and thinkers, both from across the region and around the country, about what Appalachia’s future could look like. But amid all of these voices, rarely do we hear from the people who actually stand to inherit this place: Appalachian youth. In this report, three young people share perspectives on what it’s like to be young in the region right now – including the great parts & not so great parts – and talk about why they love this place so deeply. We hear these voices in advance of the upcoming It’s Good to Be Young in the Mountains (IG2BYITM) conference happening in Harlan, Ky. August 13-16. The meeting/festival will bring young people from across the region together to imagine an Appalachian future they would like to be part of. This report was produced by Destiny Caldwell, a graduate of Appalshop’s Appalachian Media Institute, summer staff at Making Connections News, and a student at Alice Lloyd College.
August 6, 2015