WASHINGTON, D.C. (October 22, 2017) – A core part of My Brother’s Keeper Alliance’s (MBK Alliance) work is ensuring that communities and evidence-based organizations have clear pathways to resources needed to breakdown systematic barriers facing boys and young men of color. Since January, MBK Alliance has awarded nearly $1 Million in grants across the country.
On July 27, MBK Alliance convened its first Regional Summit in Long Beach, CA with youth, mayors and community leaders from cities, counties and tribal nations across the Western U.S. to celebrate progress and share best practices to expand opportunity for boys and young men of color (BYMOC). At the Summit, MBK Alliance announced a call to action for local organizations to submit proposals addressing barriers to health and well-being through violence prevention programs for boys and young men of color. As a result, MBK Alliance will award the following grants:
Long Beach Cares – $100,000 to the City of Long Beach Department of Health & Human Services MBK Health Equity & Violence Prevention Youth Leadership Program. The purpose of the Leadership Program is to expose BYMOC to the field of public health and provide them with the skills to advance population health, health equity and violence prevention through community organizing and engagement.
The Unity Council – $100,000 to support the MBK Oakland Cross-Community Collaborative for Building Safe and Supportive Communities. This capacity building effort is focused on unifying the community by investing in professional development of young leaders serving BYMOC and placing youth in leadership positions in organizations who serve them.
On June 22, MBK Alliance hosted its Pathways to Success Opportunity Summit in Memphis working with the City of Memphis, Memphis Office of Youth Services, the Greater Memphis Chamber, Workforce Investment Network, the Memphis Grizzlies and the Memphis Police Department. More than 1,000 Memphis youth, including boys and young men of color, had the opportunity to interact and interview with employers, and be hired on-the-spot. As a result of the Summit, MBK Alliance will award the following grant:
Seeding Success – $75,000 to provide ongoing support to boys and young men of color in Memphis who originally attended the Pathways to Success Opportunity Summit.
On June 2, in partnership with MBK Boston and Mayor Martin Walsh, MBK Alliance held a day-long Solution Session in the city of Boston. The session started with a youth-led dialogue where BYMOC in grades 9 -10 proposed solutions around post-secondary attainment. The event concluded with 300 community leaders and partners discussing ways to better support young men of color as they prepare for college and career, reducing youth violence and promoting mentoring opportunities. As a result of the youth-led dialogue and convening, MBK Alliance awarded the following grant:
Boston Education Development Foundation – $10,000 to support MBK Boston Mentorship for College and Career Success to implement activities such as college and historical trips that promote post-secondary education, positive identity formation, and bonding with mentors.
On May 11, MBK Albuquerque and Innovate + Educate hosted a Job Ready Hire Fair where more than 300 young people between the ages of 18 and 29 were hired on site by more than 30 companies. As a result of that day, MBK Alliance partnered with the City of Albuquerque and Albuquerque Community Foundation to launch Prospero! an initiative to skill-up and connect young men of color who were not hired at the fair to get them placed in quality jobs.
Albuquerque Community Foundation for Prospero – $200,000 for work in partnership with the city of Albuquerque and the Albuquerque Community Foundation to provide access to economic opportunities leading to long-term employment for young men of color and investment in mentorship and violence prevention efforts.
On April 28, at the inaugural MBK Alliance Youth Summit: “Empowering & Equipping Tomorrow’s Native Leaders” nearly 100 Native youth had the opportunity to engage in youth-led discussions that focused on building a hopeful dialogue around suicide prevention. Following the Summit, MBK Alliance is providing MBK Albuquerque and partnering organizations with resources to advance and actualize solutions that emerge from these discussions with the following grants:
Native American Community Academy Foundation – $20,000 for further development of the Karuna Colectiva~A Compassionate Collective intended to build 21st century skills through a process where young Native students work, learn, and earn in real world market-based settings with mentors and peers.
MBK Alliance traveled to the Northern Cheyenne community to learn how to better support BYMOC residing in tribal communities. As a result of that powerful visit, MBK Alliance is awarding the following grant:
The Boys & Girls Club of the Northern Cheyenne Nation – $27,500 to implement the Strength-based Mentoring Program, a comprehensive cultural and resilience based initiative that allows youth and elders to build and sustain healthy relations that incorporate teachings and values as well as life and social skills training that promote resiliency and reduce risk factors among Native youth.
Additionally, MBK Alliance awarded the following grant to support summer and year-round jobs and skills development:
Chicago Cook Workforce Partnership – $250,000 to support their Opportunity Works Program to provide jobs, access to economic opportunity and skills training to boys and young men of color in suburban Cook County. This grant supplements strong efforts underway that serve primarily inner-city youth, ensuring youth dealing with similar challenges in the broader Chicagoland area have the tools and resources they need for success.