Why I became a Minnesota Teen Activist

Dreams to create change


Anisa Kahin

Minnesota Teen Activists is a group of teens that work with government officials, communities in Minnesota and other activism groups to create change. Minnesota Teen Activists was created in 2020 by Aliyah Murray and has now reached over forty thousand people statewide.

I’ve always admired the work that Minnesota Teen Activists have done. Being in 7th grade when the organization first started, I’ve always watched their work from afar. I was inspired by the amount of protests that were started and created by kids my age. With their platform, I saw that they used social media to uplift student voices. The page is made up of youth who have the same mindset of creating change as I do. When I saw that they were looking for more team members, I took that as a sign to register and hoped to get in.

The process of getting into Minnesota Teen Activist was by filling out a form they had in their Instagram bio. They had the forms open until mid March. After their forms closed, they had a Google meeting with all of the applicants and we just discussed our goals and reasons on becoming a Minnesota Teen Activist. The admission came out in late April and then there was a follow up meeting after that.

As someone who strives to solve problems, I’ve always wanted to use my voice for good. I also understood that I couldn’t do this work on my own. When I found out that I got into Minnesota Teen Activists, I was beyond ecstatic. I’ve always dreamt of being able to create real change that would stick and now I’ve been given that chance. 

My dream of wanting to create change started with me coming to terms with my identity. Growing up, I was surrounded by kids who looked just like me. I didn’t directly face racism until fifth grade. I was shocked when it happened but I didn’t know what to do. I didn’t defend myself until the year was over. But things changed when I transferred to St. Louis Park middle school. It was the first time I saw kids who looked different than I did. So I made it my goal to fit in. My views started to shift once COVID hit and after the murder of George Floyd. 

My goal now, after becoming a Minnesota Teen Activist, is to continue advocating for change within my communities and outside of Minnesota too. I wouldn’t be in the spot that I am in without the help of SOAR. SOAR caused me to really dig deep and understand why I believed what I believed. I was able to expand and grow as a human being. SOAR taught me how to use my voice to create an impact. 

I am now able to use my voice to impact those beyond my school. I am impacting little boys and girls who look just like me and are hoping to see themselves in my place one day. My hope is that future generations don’t have to fear speaking out against wrong doings. My hope is that they act against them. One thing I would recommend to anyone hoping to create change is to gain the ability to speak honestly.