Youth Leadership

Investing in Young Leaders from Under-Resourced Neighborhoods

Our Goal: 

Expand opportunities for transformational youth development and authentic leadership

Our Strategy:

We support community-based organizations that offer transformational programming to youth. These programs position youth as long-term leaders in their communities and give them the tools to challenge institutional barriers that limit opportunities and potential. 

Our Investment:

2022-23 Youth Leadership Grants: Grants support community-based organizations that position youth as long-term leaders in their communities. 

  • #Building Beats: To support DJ and music programs that teach entrepreneurial, leadership, and life skills to young people of color. Boroughwide

  • *Day One New York, Inc.: For programs to end dating abuse and intimate partner violence among youth by connecting survivors to direct support services including counseling and case management, legal representation, and preventive and peer-led education. Boroughwide

  • *First Tech Fund, Inc: For programs to close the digital divide for low-income high schoolers by providing access to technology, career and college guidance, and engaging youth as part of an advisory board. Students receive free laptops and internet access, targeted advising and networking, and mentorship from industry-specific professionals. Boroughwide

  • #Footsteps: To support formerly ultra-Orthodox Jewish youth transitioning into mainstream society with resources, leadership development, and peer connections. Crown Heights, Borough Park, Kensington, Flatbush, Williamsburg

  • *GrowHouse NYC: To support arts and activism programming that connects young Black creatives and activists to older artists for support and mentorship, including a gap year program for Black high school graduates to learn about equitable design, power, organizing, and history through workshops, travel, and a community design school. Bedford-Stuyvesant

  • *Health and Education Alternatives for Teens (HEAT) Program: To support developmentally and culturally competent wraparound services for LGBTQ+ youth of color, centering clients in all decisions about their treatment and care plans, with services spanning STI and HIV prevention and treatment (including PEP and PreP), hormone therapy for trans and gender non-conforming youth, and mental healthcare. Boroughwide

  • *Jamel Gaines Creative Outlet: For dance and cross-disciplinary arts education, performance, and cultural programming led by teaching artists serving under-resourced and Title-1 schools, a professional youth dance company, and scholarships and employment programs that train students of color in dance, theater, music, arts administration, performance, and production. Boroughwide

  • *Opening Act NYC: For free, professionally designed theater programming for students of color in under-resourced public schools, as well as youth in the NYCDOE’s Alternative High School program who are pursuing their GED following a disruption in their education for reasons such as homelessness, teen parenthood, incarceration, and/or court involvement. Boroughwide

  • #STEM from Dance: To support a cohesive learning experience in which dance is used to introduce girls of color to computer science. Boroughwide

  • *Teens Take Charge: For student-led advocacy to advance racial equity in public schools, with programming that includes researching and building campaigns around issues that impact the wider student population, and conducting skill-building and political education workshops that are led by senior student organizers in partnership with program alumni. Boroughwide

  •  #Theatre of the Oppressed NYC: To engage court-involved youth as actors and playwrights in a comprehensive theater-for-social justice program that uses real life stories of the youth actors. Boroughwide 

  • *The Alex House Project: To support young parents and families in Red Hook with programs that provide essential resources including basic supplies, childcare, and mental health counseling, and courses that use a peer-education model to develop leadership skills and healthy decision-making, nurturing parenting, and overall stability. Red Hook

  • *Tomorrow's Leaders NYC, Inc.: To support mentorship and youth development programs in East New York that focus on helping over-age middle and high school students who have been held back in the public school system to overcome social, emotional, and academic challenges so they can graduate. East New York

  • #United Community Centers: To support the operation and management of one of the city’s largest youth-led farms as well as a sexual health-focused peer education program. East New York 

  • #UPROSE: For community organizing, public education, and leadership programs for youth that advance environmental sustainability and resiliency. Sunset Park, South Slope, Gowanus

  • #viBe Theater Experience: To support programming that engages girls and young women of color to write, create, publish, direct, and perform personal collaborative theater and music. Boroughwide

  • #Youth Design Center: For a community-based creative agency and community design center that provides a gateway for young people to learn marketable skills in STEAM, access higher education, achieve economic mobility, and become civic leaders. Youth Design Center was formerly known as “Made in Brownsville.” Brownsville+

  • *YVote/Next Gen Politics: For youth-led civic engagement programming including organizing and creating policy proposals around economic mobility, food justice, housing security, civic opportunities, and mental health; peer-led workshops for schools and community groups; regular teen summits and cohort-based institutes; and training to become peer facilitators. Boroughwide

*Indicates First-Year Grantee

+Partially funded by ELMA Music Foundation

#One Year Grant Extension