Men in the Movement: Kevin Park
Meghan Huppuch, Guest Contributor
Kevin Park was introduced to feminism by his cousin Kathi. Their conversations about her political beliefs made him curious to find out more, so he asked his cousin for her advice. Kathi suggested he become a volunteer with an organization where he could explore feminism in action, and suggested one where she had previously been an intern. So, as a rising high school junior, Kevin became a part of the family at Girls for Gender Equity (GGE). Playing many different and vital roles, he has been a regular presence ever since.
In many ways, Kevin has become our ‘go-to' guy. He has co-facilitated workshops on sexual harassment and created a "Men as Allies" club at our after-school program to educate other young men on their role in bringing about equality. Kevin’s sensitive and sensible disposition allowed him to make lasting connections with the students, and his consideration, preparedness, and programmatic flexibility encourages growth as he continues to build the group's curriculum.
Kevin excites those around him with his passionate commitment to gender equality. His dedication to feminist ideals and ability to ask thought-povoking questions that push others' thinking have been a gift to GGE's work.
“In the time I have worked with Kevin, I’ve been impressed with his thoughtfulness and genuine investment in gender equality," said Deesha Narichania, Director of Programs. "Kevin embodies feminist ways of working and possesses a comfort with himself, his connection to feminism, and his process. I’ve seen other men who are committed to the idea of ending violence, but struggle to undo or resist male socialization. Kevin seems very aware of his presence and purposeful in how he interacts with others.”
Kevin's contributions to feminism aren't contained within the walls of GGE; he worked to re-energize a men's issues club at his high school that was considered a joke by most of the students. Undeterred, Kevin found a faculty advisor who helped him create a safe space in the school for young men to discuss the ways masculinity really mattered in their lives. His courage in reforming the club in the face of peer ridicule speaks to Kevin's desire and ability to push his community to grow.
Kevin Park is truly a champion and advocate of the work to end violence against women. A rising sophomore at the New School majoring in Environmental Studies, he is an exemplary feminist activist. And the best part is, he is just getting started.