Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School seniors Douglas Andrade and Isabella Hazell-El-Deiry were sworn in as members of the Governor’s Statewide Youth Council for Dukes County on Nov. 30. Governor Deval Patrick presided over the swearing in of 28 new members — two representatives from every county — on the Grand Staircase of the Massachusetts State House.
Both students have been active in the high school and Island community.
Bella recently helped to engage the student body in an assembly featuring noted civil rights activist, writer and journalist Charlayne Hunter-Gault. She was sponsored by Marianne Larned of the Martha’s Vineyard Youth Leadership Initiative.
Doug is the current president of the Young Brothers to Men and he organized and ran the second annual Thanksgiving Food Basket drive, which provided 59 baskets. He also coordinated last year’s winter coat drive, which provides winter coats and clothes for more than 170 individuals, men, women and children. Doug was sponsored by high school teacher and Young Brothers to Men founder Leo Frame.
Governor Patrick created the Governors Statewide Youth Council in 2008, in an effort to incorporate youth voices into the policy-making process following an outbreak of youth-related violence in the greater Boston area. Since that time, the Youth Council has advised the governor on decisions and policies designed to improve the lives of young people throughout the commonwealth.
Bella and Doug have committed to serve two years and attend meetings once every two months with staff and the governor. While on the council they will work closely with other members and their adult sponsors to address issues related to youth. This past term the Governor’s Statewide Youth Council focused on anti-bullying initiatives in the schools.