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"Making Other Resiliency Experiences"


The Value of I Am M.O.R.E.

I Am M.O.R.E. helps young people of color understand that they are MORE than the worst thing that has ever happened to them. Our unique empowerment process leverages the power of personal storytelling, with critical inquiry and reflection, equity and social-emotional skill building to teach young people how to become active researchers of their own lives.


Once youth can think more critically about their life experiences and expose the hidden wounds of their trauma, they begin to walk through the world, not as victims, but as heroes of their own re-imagined story.

  • Out of 1,300 applicants, I Am M.O.R.E. was awarded a $5,000 Social Emotional Learning (SEL) Innovation Award from Education First for the 2019-20 school year. In mid-October 2019, we will be part of a national convening of SEL experts in New Mexico.

Pictured above are the I Am M.O.R.E. co-founders: (l to r)  Justice Serenity English, Jeanette A. Mmunga, Johana Amami and S. Renee Mitchell, an award-winning former journalist and youth advocate.


In October, I Am M.O.R.E. youth facilitated a resiliency-focused workshop titled "Nothing About Us Without Us: Moving Youth from Hurt to Hope" at the Trauma-Informed Oregon conference in Sunriver.


Here is What We Believe

We are all born to tell our stories.

It is shame and fear of not fitting in that prevents us from sharing our deepest and authentic truths.

We all crave connection.

But, one can only get connection if someone is listening and open to hearing with ears, eyes and  heart.

We all had some form of trauma.

The question is: How did you react and deal with it?  ​How do you cope with challenges? How do you recover from grief and trauma?  Who is listening to you and encouraging you to move past it and build resiliency?

I Am M.O.R.E.

(A theme song to raise hope)

I am MORE than my actions

or what you think you see.

I am MORE than the worst thing

that ever happened to me.

Might not have known it before

but now I do.

Nothing can hold me down

I rise up!

When I am facing difficulties

When I have lost touch

with my own dreams

I  rise up!

When so much stress is on my mind

It seems I'm always running 

out of time  -  I rise up!

Rise up!  Rise up!

Rise up!  Rise up!

Rise up!  Rise up!

I need you to believe that

I am MORE!

Here's How Youth Build Resiliency

  • We are freely expressing our creativity, voice and strengths.


  • We are accepted by our peers.


  • We are grounded in knowing who we are - culturally and spiritually.


  • We have access to safe spaces and self-care opportunities to have fun and just be ourselves, without judgment or fear of our safety.


  • We have a relationship with a positive adult who sees me,   believes in me and authentically

      cares about my well-being.

  • We are trained in social-emotional skills, which teach us how to manage our emotions, feel empathy for others and maintain relationships.