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Fargo Youth Initiative - May 8, 2022 Minutes

The Regular Meeting of the Fargo Youth Initiative Members of the City of Fargo, North Dakota, was held in the Meadowlark Room of Fargo City Hall at 1:00 p.m., Sunday, May 8, 2022.

The Fargo Youth Initiative Members present or absent were as follows:

Present: Natalie Evensen, Madeline Abbott, Abhijna Kavasseri, Anna French

Absent: Kha (Andy) Tao, Erika Spanjer, Aarya Panwalkar, Fatima Attia, Samuel Swenson, Jadyn Chakua, Fatima Attia

Item 1. Welcome and Introductions
Chair Kavasseri welcomed Members to the meeting.

Item 2. Approve Agenda & Minutes
Member French moved the Order of Agenda to be approved. Second by Member Evensen. All Members present voted aye and the motion was declared carried.

Member Evensen moved the minutes of the March 13, 2022 Fargo Youth Initiative meeting to be approved. All Members present voted aye and the motion was declared carried.

Item 3. Recruitment
Assistant Planner Catlyn Christie said there are still several vacancies to fill for the upcoming school year. Members discussed possible outreach methods including making a video, providing information during lunch, posting flyers, and personally inviting potential members to apply. The application deadline will be extended to Friday, May 20.

Item 4. Island Park Master Plan
Member French provided updates from the recent Island Park Master Plan public engagement session she attended. Discussion was held regarding proposed changes to the park. Member Abbott noted the value of tree coverage and quietness for tennis matches regarding proposed relocation of tennis courts. Other discussion included potential for pool relocation, tree removal for more parking, and outdoor fitness equipment.

Item 5. Staff Report
Assistant Planner Catlyn Christie provided updates from the staff report included in the packet. She encouraged members interested in serving on the North Dakota Department of Health Youth Advisory Board to directly reach out to the contacts noted. Members watched a video on the upcoming Fargo Greenway Study and expressed their support for the concept.

Item 6. Announcements
Member Abbott shared that the deadline is Monday, May 23 to apply for the Superintendent’s Student Cabinet of the North Dakota Department of Public Instruction. The Student Cabinet provides State Superintendent Kirsten Baesler with ideas and opinions about improving K-12 education and education policy in North Dakota.

Assistant Planner Christie noted that there are five senior members whose terms as Fargo Youth Initiative members will soon be ending and thanked them for their service.

Item 7. Subcommittee Work
Chair Kavasseri provided an update on a meeting with North’s principal on potential improvements to Black History Month. She said they will be working on defining goals for potential implementation in 2023.

Assistant Planner Christie shared a summary of recent meeting with Melissa Markegard, Fargo Cass Public Health’s Mental Health Coordinator. Discussion was held regarding student homework levels and barriers students face to accessing therapy.

Item 8. Adjourn
The time of adjournment was 2:02 p.m.