In 2018, Citizen University, a national platform for fostering responsible and empowered citizenship, launched a nationwide program called Civic Saturdays, bringing together people across a specific region to nurture a spirit of shared purpose around our nation’s creeds of liberty, equality, and self-government. Prince Edward County’s first Civic Saturday will be held on Saturday, September 26, 2020, from 10:00 to 11:30 am, via Zoom. To register for this event, go to tinyurl.com/PECivicSaturday.
This nonpartisan event will include music, readings from American civic literature, a civic address, and community dialogue. It is free and open to the public.
“Civic Saturday has struck a chord, and we have taken it national with events around the country and with a new program that trains people to lead these gatherings and build these civic dialogues in their own towns,” said Eric Lie, Citizen University founder. “In a time when politics is so fiercely polarized, we want to appreciate anew the simple phenomenon of democratic citizenship.”
Josh Blakely, Director of Brock Experiences for Longwood University and a public speaker around the country on the topic of sexual misconduct, will lead the event. Blakely, who is engaged in local advocacy around education, inclusion, and community development was one of a small group of fellows selected by Citizen University to receive specialized training to bring this program to different parts of the nation. Blakely is one of only two people in the state of Virginia to be selected to participate in this program in the history of Citizen University.
“Civic Saturdays are intended to build capacity in a community for difficult dialogue and problem-solving when policy questions inevitably come up,” Blakely said. “By coming together to explore what connects us to one another, we can break down the walls of polarization and division that tear us apart. My hope for our time together is that we might see that there is more that unites us in Prince Edward County than divides us from one another.”