We are Mahoning Valley Sojourn to the Past, of Youngstown, Ohio. Our organization, which currently participates in conjunction with its founding Director Jeff Steinberg, takes High School students on a leadership development, life changing, history immersion journey to the Civil Rights sites of the South. Our student leaders, meet the “foot soldiers” of the Movement and learn the lessons of social and racial justice, nonviolence, civic responsibility, hope compassion and tolerance. Our student leaders learn to “NEVER BE A SILENT WITNESS” with the goal of aiding the next generation in incorporating these lessons into their daily lives to become ambassadors of nonviolence and leaders for social & racial justice in their homes, schools and community.


Sojourn collage by Derrick


Current activities:
  • Training others to do voter registration
  • Voter registration
  • Partnering with League of Voters and YWCA on  raising awareness to issues of inequity and racism
  • Creating anti-racism workshop to present to various age groups when asked

Person of the Week - Penny Wells
Spotlight of the week - Mahoning Valley Sojourn to the past

About Sojourn to the past

This is a life changing journey! Students realize they have the power to make a difference in their own lives and in their schools and communities, and they can make that difference right now. This valuable program has led to the establishment of Ohio Nonviolence Week in Youngstown, Ohio.

Resolutions have been passed by The City of Youngstown and by Youngstown State University acknowledging  non-violence week, which is the first week of October each year. Youngstown City Schools and various area school districts are also supportive of Ohio Nonviolence Week and take part in related activities. The Youngstown School Board passed a resolution for an annual Ohio Nonviolence Week. Mahoning County commissioners recently passed a nonviolence resolution for 2011. Congressman Lewis has presented a resolution to the US House of Representatives.

Our participants are available to speak to groups about their experiences with Sojourn to the Past and about promoting non-violence. There is also traveling “Then and Now” Exhibit which is available upon request. Adults can apply to travel with the group at their own expense. Please use our contact page to inquire.

Please read more about our part in this remarkable program on our “About Us” page and about the program details  at the Sojourn to the Past Website.

“There are those who say to you – we are rushing this issue of civil rights.

I say we are 172 years late.” 

Hubert Humphrey
July 14, 1948

“Not one of us can rest, be happy, be at home, be at peace with ourselves,
until we end hatred and division.”
John Lewis
US House of Representatives


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