Fransua Senegal

< Back

Fransua Senegal
Violence Prevention Educator, Teens on Targetfransua-882x1024

fsenegal@youthalive.org | (510) 594-2588 x311

At his gym in East Oakland, TNT Violence Prevention Educator Fransua Senegal was the kind of guy parents would bring their kids to when trouble appeared on the horizon. Fransua would talk to them about his own teen years, not just about the violence and danger he saw or the mistakes he made, but the results, the pain and loss and consequences. This happens a lot at Youth ALIVE!: somebody gets hired to do something he or she was already doing out in the world anyway. Long before he joined the staff at Youth ALIVE!, Fransua understood important issues TNT addresses in its comprehensive prevention curriculum, that violence can turn up anywhere in your life, that its effects can’t be hidden forever, that violence is not only frightening to a young person, but also confusing. Now the Oakland native’s job is to work with high school students in East Oakland, most of whom have been exposed to violence on their blocks or in their schools. Fransua worries especially about young men of color being taught to hold their emotions too much in check. He wants them to know that it’s okay to have emotions and to express them, that holding them in can lead to bigger problems. He loves to see his young men with tough exteriors begin to allow themselves to show some vulnerability. He loves to see them begin to open up about their experiences. It’s seeing the emergence of this kind of growth and thoughtfulness, says Fransua, that makes his work worthwhile.