At the South Central LA Demo Day, young men of color pitched their tech inventions after having taken part in a coding academy over the summer. Demo Day and the coding academy were offered by TXT: Teens Exploring Technology.
Author: Amy DePaul
Five-year-old Katherine Turcios looked skeptical as a hygienist held up a pen-sized dental instrument for the kindergartener to examine. “No pica,” she told Katherine, assuring her it wouldn’t hurt. Then she placed it in the child’s hand so she could see for herself that it wasn’t sharp.
The day begins on Crocker Street in downtown Los Angeles in a shady, fenced-in courtyard behind the Volunteers of America building. A team of health and social service workers gather with cardboard coffee cups in hand, chatting and planning for the work ahead. They form a circle, and a group leader steps forward: What are we offering today? Team members call out the services available: help for mental health problems and substance abuse, and referrals for doctor visits.