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:

2021-22 Youth Leadership Grants: Grants support community-based organizations that position youth as long-term leaders in their communities. 

  • *America on Tech: To support the East New York/Brownsville Summer Tech Camp, and the Youth Design Center, a gateway for young people to learn marketable hard skills in STEAM, access post-secondary education, achieve mobility, and engage in place-based community revitalization. East New York, Brownsville

  • Audre Lorde Project: To support youth-led programs and advocacy for LGBTQIA people of color that build leadership and organizing skills, reduce surveillance policing, and promote safer communities. Boroughwide

  • Black Women's Blueprint: For a partnership with student organizers to pilot campus-based transformative justice practices that hold harm-doers accountable and support sexual violence survivors in their healing and development. Crown Heights    

  • *Brooklyn College Community Partnership: To support an after school program that provides mentorship, access to Brooklyn College's resources, and dedicated, year-round academic and interdisciplinary support to under-resourced students across Brooklyn schools. Boroughwide

  • Brownsville Community Culinary Center: To support the culinary training and apprenticeship program for young people, ages 18-34, from Brownsville. Brownsville

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

  • Center for Anti-Violence Education: For comprehensive anti-violence, empowerment, and leadership programming for young people, including the expansion of services for LGBTQ homeless youth and service providers. Boroughwide

  • *Center for Urban Pedagogy: To support a program for high school students that centers on engaging young people to understand policies and structures that affect their neighborhood, promoting civic engagement and supporting their capacity as community leaders. Boroughwide

  • *Court Appointed Special Advocates of New York City (CASA-NYC): To support the Youth Leadership Council (YLC), a program of currently or formerly in foster care youth that plan advocacy and training activities, advise on policies and practices, and receive ongoing support regarding their own personal and professional development and stability while serving as advisors and ambassadors of CASA-NYC to volunteers and supporters, the broader child welfare/court community, and the general public. Boroughwide

  • *Educational Video Center: To support culturally-responsive documentary film and media arts programs for historically excluded youth who are disengaged with their education by teaching them documentary filmmaking to develop their artistic, critical literacy, and leadership skills. 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

  • Fifth Avenue Committee: For a leadership and advocacy program for NYCHA youth. Gowanus, Red Hook

  • *Genspace NYC: To support a STEAM youth development internship program where youth gain hands-on experience to learn, create, and grow with the life sciences. Sunset Park

  • Girl Be Heard: For multidisciplinary arts opportunities designed to engage young women in social justice education and develop their leadership skills. Boroughwide

  • Girls for Gender Equity: To advance advocacy strategies led by girls and young women of color and gender expansive youth of color focused on issues including gender based violence, sexism, and racism. Boroughwide 

  • *Green City Force: To support an environmental initiative that advances the city’s climate and equity goals, and connects high school graduates to employment opportunities and sectoral apprenticeships. Boroughwide

  • *Green Guerillas: To support a youth-driven training program that creates a pathway to employment and leadership within the food justice movement through skill-building workshops, and engagement with community gardeners and urban farms and leaders in the food justice movement. Bedford Stuyvesant, Brownsville, East New York, Crown Heights, Flatbush

  • Groundswell Community Mural Project: For school year and summer programs that engage youth from underserved communities in public mural making as a means of social change while developing their leadership and creative skills. Boroughwide

  • IntegrateNYC: To support the leadership and capacity of students working to end segregation in New York City public schools. Boroughwide

  • Kings Against Violence Initiative (KAVI): For the hospital-based violence interruption program and in-school and community-based discussion groups and workshops. East New York, Brownsville, Flatbush

  • *Red Hook Initiative: To support an initiative that promotes social and economic justice in Red Hook while cultivating local leadership and strengthening the future of youth development through academic support, leadership training, part-time employment, college guidance, emotional health support, opportunities, and services that prepare youths for a self-sufficient, civically-active adulthood. Red Hook

  • *Sadie Nash Leadership Project: To support programs that engage youth of color and their experiences to discuss race, identity, power, and privilege, and to build community, critical consciousness, and college and career readiness. Bedford Stuyvesant, Crown Heights, Flatbush, East New York, Canarsie, Brownsville 

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

  • *Student Dream: To support programs for college-bound students of color that provide them with the necessary financial literacy skills to close the racial and economic gap which benefits their white counterparts. Boroughwide 

  • 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

  • *The Wyckoff House & Association, Inc.: To support innovative educational and farm-based programs that build cultural and agricultural connections within the community through the teaching of Brooklyn’s rich history as a leader in urban farming, with an emphasis on: community, the immigrant experience, supporting family, and understanding the health benefits of sustainable food. East Flatbush, Canarsi

  • Youth Advocacy Corps: To support YAC’s core youth advocacy programs: the Youth Advocacy Summer Institute and Mental Health Awareness Project. Boroughwide, East New York

  • 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+


*Indicates First-Year Grantee
+Partially funded by ELMA Music Foundation