Stoneham, MA | 14
2016 Award Recipient
Max Davis first developed a passion for advocacy through his work with homeless youth in the greater Boston area. Max was moved by the story of a young army veteran who, after serving in Afghanistan, was medically discharged before serving out his term so became homeless and was reduced to living under a bridge. This led Max to learn more about homelessness and particularly the challenges faced by unaccompanied homeless youth (UHY). In 2013, Max began lobbying for UHY to have housing and services. Then in 2014, Max lobbied tirelessly at the statehouse with youth from his synagogue where he created Legislature in Action-Kids Helping Kids. The project’s goal was to pass the Massachusetts House bill 135 into law, in support of the 13,000 UHY in Massachusetts. The law would put a system in place to obtain data about UHY and provide them with housing and supportive services. Members of the Legislature in Action-Kids Helping Kids project began by drafting talking points in support of the legislation, attending meetings with policymakers, and testifying at public hearings about the bill. Following the establishment of the law, Max advocated for necessary funding and urged Representatives and Senators to create $2M in funding in support of services outlined in the legislation. To date, Legislature in Action-Kids Helping Kids has raised nearly $8,000 and garnered the support of local adult and youth community group leaders. Max currently is working with a community agency to create a local program providing housing and services for UHY. Max hopes to continue engaging local organizations to back the mission of Legislature in Action-Kids Helping Kids while inspiring teen volunteers to end the injustices faced by homeless youth.
Legislature in Action-Kids Helping Kids was founded to help pass the Massachusetts House bill 135 into law, in support of the 13,000 unaccompanied homeless youth in Massachusetts. The law put a system in place to obtain data about UHY and provide them with housing and supportive services.