Justice for Opportunity Youth (JOY)
South LA Opportunity Youth (OY), ages 16-24, will receive: 1) Equitable access to economic & cultural resources & advancement; 2) Community safety awareness & empowerment via promoting peace, belonging, & inclusion; & 3) Increased sense of belonging via culturally responsive social justice and emotional learning activities. OY will receive mental health support to mitigate risks and promote healing from experienced trauma and adverse childhood experiences, including from school and community danger; and safe community engagement with others.
Please list the organizations collaborating on this proposal.
Harvest All Resource Center (HARC)
What is the primary issue area that your application will impact?
In which areas of Los Angeles will you be directly working?
In what stage of innovation is this project, program, or initiative?
Pilot or new project, program, or initiative
What is your understanding of the issue that you are seeking to address?
A report by BOLD VISION 2028 (April 2021), reported that while the Greater LA region is one of the fastest-growing hubs of media arts, technology & entrepreneurship, youth of color face barriers to accessing quality employment with pathways for advancement and living wages in these industries. Researchers found community violence to be associated with detrimental mental health outcomes for youth. Black adolescents grapple with over-policing, crime, & racism. Black youth face a number of inequities in school. The LA County Youth Justice Work Group (October 2020) reported: That black youth in LA County are nearly 8 times as likely as white youth to be arrested; & as the number of youth involved in the justice system decreases, disparities increase. An urgent need exists to mitigate risks & promote healing, for Opportunity Youth, from trauma and adverse child experiences. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2019) suggest that ACEs & their associated harms are preventable.
Describe the project, program, or initiative this grant will support to address the issue.
Our project aims to empower and support the development of economically, socially & emotionally healthy Opportunity Youth, ages 16-24 . Core Values: Racial & Ethnic Equity; Youth Economic Outcomes; Community Cultural Wealth; Centering Community; Youth Development; Public Safety Achieved thru Wellbeing; Evidence-informed Design. The project is designed to empower OY to seek justice for themselves & their community via increased awareness & the promotion of equitable access to economic & cultural resources, community safety, & social & emotional wellbeing. Youth will receive training & support in the following areas: 1) Youth Economic Outcomes - mentors & personal development support; education & training focused on career pathways; financial literacy; 2) Community Cultural Wealth (Yosso) (to position students to leverage their education &/or career training to enter society prepared to solve challenging problems, serve their home communities & model community safety models) - aspirational capital; linguistic capital; familial capital; navigational capital; resistance capital; 3) Trauma-informed Care & Clinical support; 4) Healing from past trauma; 5) culturally responsive social & emotional learning skills (including a sense of belonging & self-awareness); 6) real-life examples of engaged youth, via the provision of Millennial Mentors; & 7) enhanced social connections. Outcomes from this partnership may include internships & educational opportunities; & access to careers.
Describe how Los Angeles County will be different if your work is successful.
LA2050 goals: By 2050, all residents will feel a sense of safety and belonging in their neighborhoods; less than 5% of youth, 16-24 in the City of LA will be disengaged from work and school. Vision: 1) Improved Youth Economic Outcomes - pathways for advancement via education & training; mentors & personal development; capital investments & community cultural wealth 2) Increased Meaningful Engagement - in neighborhoods, school & work via culturally responsive, social and emotional learning skills; social media connections; social justice activities; education & career development 3) Community Safety - Increased Sense of Belonging & Feeling Safe in Community Metrics: 1) 90% of Youth will implement strategies to mitigate risks & promote healing from experienced trauma; 2) 90% of Youth will be able to implement strategies for youth economic outcomes; & 3) 90% of Youth will model restorative community safety strategies. Outcomes: internships; mentorships; educational opportunities
What evidence do you have that this project, program, or initiative is or will be successful, and how will you define and measure success?
Proposed Initiative: LA2050 goals: By 2050, All residents will feel a sense of safety and belonging in their neighborhoods; less than 5% of youth, 16-24 in the City of LA will be disengaged from work and school. Project Metrics: 1) 90% of Youth will implement strategies to mitigate risks & promote healing from experienced trauma; 2) 90% of Youth will experience benefit from counseling services; 3) 90% of Youth will be able to implement strategies for community cultural wealth & youth economic outcomes; 4) 90% of Youth will utilize a digital platform to voice their opinions (increase civic engagement); & 5) 90% of Youth will model restorative community safety strategies. Project success will be measured, ongoing throughout the project, formally and informally, soliciting feedback from all stakeholders. Project services and activities will be adjusted, as data supports, to ensure the highest level of success upon project conclusion.
Approximately how many people will be impacted by this project, program, or initiative?
Direct Impact: 30
Indirect Impact: NaN
Describe the specific role of the partner organization(s) in the project, program, or initiative.
Harvest All Resource Center (HARC) - Will facilitate specific workshop activities in the areas of Youth Economic Outcomes & Community Cultural Wealth and SEL Self-Actualization, Self- Awareness, and college/career training opportunities; HARC will also share referrals to college/career and workforce skills development programs for participants. The founder will also serve as a project coorditor (when not facilitating workshops).