What We Do
Kids Voting Durham is non-partisan, non-profit organization that help Durham’s young people understand and believe in the power they have as active citizens and informed voters.
Why Kids Voting?
“The practice of democracy is not passed down through the gene pool. It must be taught and learned anew by each generation of citizens.” – Justice Sandra Day O’Conner
Since 1999 Kids Voting Durham Continues to provide young people in Durham County with an opportunity to vote on the same issues and candidates as adults on Election Day, offering them an authentic election experience at community polling sites and in their schools. Kids Voting develops leadership capacity and works to create engaged and active citizens who are ready to use their voices and understand the power they have in our democracy.
Our current students in Kindergarten through 12th grade are the leaders of tomorrow. Several studies point out that many young adults and future leaders have low levels of “civic literacy” demonstrating a need for more education in understanding how their government works and how to make a difference.
Kids Voting recognizes that this learning happens at home, at school, and in the community. We provide an authentic voting experience, focusing on local as well as state and national elections, classroom lessons and support for schools and teachers, and opportunities for families to engage with their children around voting citizenship, and family dialogue. It is our hope that these young people will become lifelong voters and contributors to their communities.
Ultimately, Kids Voting…
It’s more than just a mock election! Kids Voting Durham provides resources for students, teachers and parents about civic engagement and our responsibility as citizens. By hosting candidate forums, hands-on activities and a number of other fun programs, we are educating our community about how government works.
Kids Voting Durham was founded locally in 1999 as part of Kids Voting USA and housed at the Durham Chamber of Commerce. In 2005, Kids Voting became a program of Durham County Cooperative Extension and expanded from its original focus on elections to a year-round civic education and leadership development program for children and youth K-12.
Kids Voting works closely with the programs of Durham County Cooperative Extension in Youth Development (4-H), Consumer and Family Education, Agriculture and Horticulture. Early Childhood Development and Community Capacity Building. Kids Voting continues to partner with the Durham County Board of Elections and Durham Public Schools to reach students in the community and in their classrooms.