Brooklyn Youth Activists

Brooklyn Community Foundation is committed to supporting the leadership and agency of youth in creating community change. The Brooklyn Youth Activists is a youth-led grantmaking and advocacy program that sees youth as experts and central players in making decisions around supporting youth-centered and youth-led projects.

Each year we welcome a new cohort young people with a strong interest in social justice to our Brooklyn Youth Activists. Over a 10 month period, Activists participate in trainings, strategic planning discussions for the Foundation, and design their own youth-led grantmaking process called the Youth Voice Awards. They also design and facilitate an annual conference for young people to elevate solutions to justice issues in their communities. 

Youth Voice Awards

The Youth Voice Awards celebrates outstanding youth-led projects selected for funding by the Foundation's Brooklyn Youth Activists. The Youth Voice Awards is a youth-led and youth-designed grantmaking process that supports projects submitted by young people in partnership with local nonprofits. Projects are designed to address the Activists' seven justice pillars: LGBTQ Justice, Economic and Housing Justice, Public Health and Reproductive Justice, Food and Environmental Justice, Immigrant Justice, Education Justice, and Racial and Gender Justice.

Brooklyn Youth Activists review and evaluate projects using the following criteria:

  • Fit into one or more of the justice pillars

  • Position youth as leaders and decision-makers in their own lives

  • Provide opportunities for the growth and development of young people

  • Help young people deepen historical and cultural understanding of their experiences and community issues

  • Engage young people in political education and awareness

  • Help young people build a collective identity as social change agents

  • Have a neighborhood-based and community-driven approach

  • Promote safe(r) spaces for young people to build, create and MAKE CHANGE!

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Annual Conference


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