Navigating the Music Industry, the Military, and the Foster Care System: 15 Stories from Local Teens



Young people balanced the grief, joy and uncertainty of 2021 with the ups and downs of just being a teenager. And that’s what Radioactive storefront is all about.

During this special youth radio hour, hosts Alayna Ly and Colin Yuen present 15 stories produced by young people during the coronavirus pandemic. Charlotte Engrav was the producer of this show.

[RadioActive Youth Media is KUOW’s radio journalism and audio storytelling program for young people. This hour of radio was entirely youth-produced, from the interviewing and writing to the audio editing. And, because of the pandemic, every story you hear in this showcase was produced remotely, with each youth producer recording from home.]

RadioActive Showcase: One hour of youth radio

In this special RadioActive showcase, hosts Alayna Ly and Colin Yuen present 15 stories produced by young people during the coronavirus pandemic.

The stories featured in this showcase can be found at the links below.

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“Seeing them do it, you know you can. Seattle teenager reflects on performance, music and disability

Mia Crump is a teenage girl from Seattle determined to claim her place in the music industry, even if she doesn’t see herself in it. Mia spoke with her friend, Lily Turner from RadioActive.

How My Brother’s Mental Strength Through A COVID Deployment Helped Us Get Closer

Petty Officer Serigne Diakhaté spent nearly a year at sea on an extended deployment – the US Navy wanted to prevent COVID-19 outbreaks on ships. Serigne’s brother, Khassim Diakhaté of RadioActive, has his story.

How an educator made room for young people of color during the pandemic

Fernell Miller is a teacher and founder of The Root of Our Youth, a program dedicated to racial equity, particularly in education. RadioActive’s Zana Stewart is on the program and has more.

A Guitar and a Dream: My Father’s Teenage Immigration Story

Hugo Guerra had a difficult family life growing up in Guatemala. He used his guitar to face. When he immigrated to America, his guitar became a tool for survival. RadioActive’s Adrian Guerra has this story about his father.

Two teenagers separated by a generation: what “working hard” means to my mother and me

Michell Nguyen has high demands on her eldest daughter, Jennifer Nguyen of RadioActive. Jennifer spoke with her mother to understand where these standards came from.

From Hong Kong to Seattle, the love story of my grandparents’ hair salon

Colin Yuen of RadioActive spoke to his grandmother, Yuk Yuen, about his immigration story, his love affair and what he needs to learn from her.

This Muslim teen didn’t have a place to express her needs, so she made one herself

Sadeen Al Ziyad is a student at Nathan Hale High School. She is committed to making her school a more inclusive place for Muslim students. Najuma Abadir from RadioActive has this story about her friend.

Why folklórico matters to me and my best friend

Folklórico is a dance style from Mexico. And for Kylie Hooks, it’s a way to connect with her family and her culture. Josie Gonzalez of RadioActive is also a folk dancer, and she brings us that story.

How my grandfather the fish ecologist affected the nation – and me

Hal Beecher loves nature. But her love has been pushed to its limits in a court case that has affected the nation. Her grandson, Rhea Beecher of RadioActive, has more.

POEM: My hijab is my emancipation, my strength and my honor

Rahmah Abdulazeez of RadioActive interviewed his sister, Zahraa Abdulazeez, about the Islamophobia they experience as young Hijabis. Rahmah woven this interview into a poem.

Confident in her and her curls: the hair journey of my best friend

Nike Adejumobi’s hair and self-esteem were damaged. She spoke to RadioActive’s Alayna Ly about her natural hair regeneration and her self-confidence.

“You never eat alone. »Lessons from my Nigerien great-grandmother

Leila M’baye of RadioActive comes from a long line of women entrepreneurs. Leila sat down with her mother to remember her great-grandmother, the woman who started it all.

Hard work pays off. For my sister, hard work took her to college

Jakha Tunkara is the first in her family to go to university. But she says her high school could have done more to help her prepare. Muhammad Tunkara of RadioActive has this story about his sister.

Don’t take my silence for weakness. My experience in the foster care system

In the United States, more than 400,000 children are currently in foster care. Kemijah Slaughter of RadioActive was one of those children.

Breaking the Culture of Silence: How My Eating Disorder Strengthened My Relationship With My Mexican Mom

Eva Solorio of RadioActive says her family communicates love through food. So when Eva faced an eating disorder in college, it was especially difficult to get help. Eva spoke to her mother about that time and how it brought them together.

Just a warning, this four minute story is candid about eating disorders.

The stories in this showcase were created in a Radioactive Online audio storytelling workshop for 15 to 18 year olds. The showcase was produced by Charlotte Engrav and edited by Kelsey Kupferer.

Find Radioactive on Instagram, Twitter, TikTok, YouTube and Facebook, and on the Radioactive Podcast.

KUOW support Radioactive and this showcase is from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Discovery Center.

If you have any comments on the stories in this showcase, you can send an email Radioactive to Or you can click on the turquoise comments tab on the edge of this page. To reach. We’re listening.



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