Racial equity

We will move from grant-making to change-making; power-agnostic to power-aware; and from charity to justice.

statement of commitment

We will continue to reflect, listen, and learn.

Since inception, Youth INC has strived to provide access and opportunity to all NYC youth by supporting hundreds of nonprofit organizations dedicated to youth development. The talent and future leaders of New York City are our youth and they reflect both the promise and vulnerability of many of our communities. We are acutely aware of the systemic racism, uneven distribution of resources and inequities which result in the foreclosed opportunities and barriers our youth and families of color encounter daily.

Given these intractable challenges, Youth INC has to do more.

  • We will reflect, listen, and learn to better understand and acknowledge the reality of the world in which we live.
  • We will prioritize our own organizational growth, which we believe is a first step to broader community impact and engagement.
  • We will strive to ensure that all stakeholders feel valued and their specific assets and needs are taken into account in order to support them authentically and equitably.
  • We will do more to eradicate the systems, policies, and behaviors that perpetuate and reinforce racism, inequities, and discriminatory practices that limit opportunity and the ability of all youth, especially youth of color, to reach their full potential. 
  • We will examine our intentions to constantly understand and challenge our biases; evaluate how systemic inequities show up in our work and in the community, while gaining insights that will affect a greater, more informed impact on our Nonprofit Partners and the youth they serve.
Diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging (DEIB) is not a mere slogan or an empty statement for Youth INC. These are core values and represent our aspirations as an organization. Living our commitment to DEIB and serving as champions for change require effective, timely action and accountability. DEIB will be reflected in our programs and services, our board of directors, our staff, how our resources are allocated and deployed, the partners we choose, the plans we make, and the culture we will sustain.

Based on a critical imperative to best serve our community, we will embed diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging into every facet of our organization.

We envision these core values will manifest in many ways:

  • Our work with our Nonprofit Partners is based on authentic trust-based relationships, where capacity-building originates with their definitions of assets and needs rather than those identified by an external funder; and upholds and ensures respect for the agency and expertise of professionals in the sector.
  • Our staff bring their full-selves and lived experience into practice; a culture of inclusion and belonging and psychological safety is valued and ever-present and encourages team members to share feedback across our organizational strata to advance DEIB goals.
  • Our board sees knowledge and ongoing education about the systemic inequities of our world and the alignment of their role with Youth INC’s commitment to DEIB as key to their ability to govern our organization exemplarily, and thereby have the drive, tools, and ability to champion DEIB as a core part of their contribution to Youth INC.
  • Through integrating DEIB into the facets of our organization, we will serve as a model for trust-based philanthropy within our funding community; to push ourselves and other funders to understand that those closest to a problem are the best equipped to name it and to address it.

Goals

  • Goal #1: Leadership Commitment & Support
    Youth INC leadership includes a critical mass of people of color more closely reflecting the diversity of the youth of our Nonprofit Partners, shifting how our organization fulfills our mission by embracing a racial equity culture as demonstrated by decision-making related to our mission and day-to-day work.
  • Goal #2: Ongoing Education & Culture of Inclusion
    Dismantling and disempowering the systems that have prevented historically marginalized people in the U.S. from succeeding is the required context for our work as an organization. We will commit to continuously educating ourselves on the history of racism in the United States, how it has created challenges for historically marginalized people to overcome, and how we can eradicate our own systems, policies, and behaviors that perpetuate and reinforce racism.
  • Goal #3: Centering Our Nonprofit Partners
    In keeping with Trust-Based Philanthropy Principles, we will treat our nonprofit partners not merely as recipients of our programs & services, but rather as stakeholders, leaders, and experts to advancing our shared mission.  
  • Goal #4: Continuous Self-Reflection and Accountability To fully embrace racial equity as a core value embodied in every facet of our organization, Youth INC will adopt and apply new practices that encourage continuous reflection, assessment and review so that we can meaningfully hold ourselves accountable for progress and change.

Questions about
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Our work crosses many fields and constituencies because of our unique venture philanthropy model. Whether you are a potential corporate supporter or a nonprofit looking for ways to build organizational resilience, we are excited to connect and explore opportunities for collaboration. We encourage you to fill out this form and a member of our team will be in touch shortly.
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our racial equity program

Rise Academy for Leaders of Color
Rise Academy for Leaders of Color shifts the landscape for ascendant BIPOC nonprofit leaders of youth development organizations. Developed in partnership with the Center for Nonprofit Leadership at Adelphi University in New York, participants will earn a comprehensive certificate in Organizational and Community Leadership. The 15-month immersive experience integrates personal leadership development, nonprofit management, community leadership, executive coaching led by AIIR Consulting, capital investment, organizational development, and a mentor program.

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