One of the most fulfilling parts of our job at the Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy is to engage with our state’s young people and allow them to display their talents. The “Kid Governor” program certainly provides that opportunity.
Oklahoma has, over the past two years, has had Luke Peterson serve as Oklahoma’s Kid Governor, a powerful advocate for helping to raise awareness of children’s issues across the state. Luke was such a strong voice that he was selected to be the first two-term Kid Governor by OICA and Sunbeam Family Services.
It is time for him to “pass the torch” to the next Kid Governor, and we at the Oklahoma Institute for Child Advocacy are honored to coordinate that process. For the past several years, we have partnered with Sunbeam Family Services for this program that they created, but they have passed that torch to us to lead the selection effort going forward.
The next Oklahoma Kid Governor will address statewide issues affecting the well-being of Oklahoma’s children. Kid Governor candidates must be between the ages of 7 and 11, live in Oklahoma, and submit a one-minute campaign video to OICA.
The video should outline the following:
● Who they are (name, age, school and where they live);
● Why they want to be Oklahoma’s Kid Governor;
● What qualities and skills as a spokesperson they will bring to the position; and
● Applicants must talk about an issue involving the state’s children that they think is very important and why it is essential. The issue could be child abuse and neglect, education, foster care, the physical or mental health of children, or any appropriate topic chosen by the candidate.
● Videos longer than one minute will be disqualified.
The person selected as Kid Governor outgoing, able to speak well, have a sense of humor and be passionate about helping other people – especially kids. Also, the Kid Governor must be willing to travel to Oklahoma City to appear at live gatherings and in videos without compensation. While we expect most opportunities for the Kid Governor will be virtual over the next year, there might be some instances where an in-person event might occur.
The Kid Governor will be selected before our Fall Forum in November. To submit a video, upload the video to Google Drive at https://tinyurl.com/okkidgov or post it on our Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/OKChildAdv.
Another program that we also have opened up is the call for young artists across the state to submit artwork to be featured on the 2021 OICA Desktop Calendar. Each year, we publish the calendar and distribute it at the State Capitol, to our sponsors, and sell it on our website. The call is open to any artist under the age of 18 who wishes to submit a piece. We are proud to partner with the Oklahoma State Medical Association with this program.
The theme for this year’s calendar is “A Healthy Future for Oklahoma’s Children.” The artworks should depict ways to help children live a more healthy life. This is an excellent way for a young artist to get exposure for his or her work. To submit an original work of art, go to https://oicaart.artcall.org.
Both the young artist and Kid Governor programs are ways to both support OICA and help us be an effective advocate for the state’s children. Everything we do at OICA is geared toward making the lives of children better; it is our only reason for being.
We will continue with our mission until every child is safe, nourished, and has a chance to become everything God intended for them to be. That is our commitment, to Oklahoma’s children, the sponsors who keep us going, and every person who, like OICA, believe in a brighter future for our children.