What We Do

Working class youth of color are disproportionately impacted by under-resourced schools, biased school discipline, and lack of access to college and career opportunities. They are pushed out of decision making that shapes their own lives.

The Youth Power Project engages youth in policy campaigns that impact their communities. Youth Power Project campaigns have helped reform biased policing, make schools inclusive and supportive, and elevate the struggle of immigrant students to get to college. In addition to this organizing, the Youth Power Project offers an intensive six week “summer action” program and year-round political education to deepen analysis, raise consciousness and develop organizing skills to create change.

MRNY has been at the forefront of the movement for community schools, which bring together an array of services — from health clinics to legal services — for students and families. Bushwick High School Campus, which MRNY helped design, provides wraparound services to over 1,300 students and their families, and implements restorative justice practices. Our culturally competent, bilingual staff connect families to our legal services, enroll families in health insurance and food stamps, and connect students to a school-based mental health clinic. Our Student Success Centers provide peer-to-peer assistance with college essay writing, financial aid applications and college selection, boosting college acceptance rates to 85% and making college-going the norm, not the exception.

 

See How We're Supporting Youth Leaders
How We're Helping

Youth Power Project members are organizing to defend the rights of immigrant youth, demand police reform, and end the school to prison pipeline. Through their organizing, MRNY youth have won major victories. We organized successfully for the expanded Student Safety Act, which now requires the city to release data that could show persistent inequities in school discipline, strengthening our campaign for school discipline reform. This law is one of the strongest in the US. After advocacy from MRNY and our allies, the city announced a ban on suspensions for the youngest students, in kindergarten through 2nd grade.

At the community school at Bushwick High School Campus, our restorative justice practices replace ineffective punitive policies to improve school climate and get students on track to success. Through our Student Success Center, we provide intensive college application support to students. The program has been so successful that the city is replicating our model in 34 schools across the city, reaching 17,000 students. 

85%
of seniors
at MRNY’s Student Success Center graduating from Bushwick Campus are accepted to college.
Fast Facts
  • MRNY’s wraparound services reach 1,300 students and their families at Bushwick Campus
  • A core group of 100 youth leaders across New York City organize campaigns for education justice and police reform, mobilizing thousands of people.
  • Founded in 1999 by MRNY youth members in Brooklyn and Queens.
  • Amid escalating immigration enforcement, we worked with schools to get accurate information to impacted families and ensured that the City enforced a clear and strict policy that federal immigration enforcement isn’t allowed in our schools.
  • The City announced that they are replicating MRNY’s youth-led Student Success Center in 34 new schools, which will reach 17,000 students.
Meet Zuleima

For Zuleima, a DREAMer and MRNY Youth Power Project member, the fight for a clean Dream Act is personal. She was born in Mexico and moved to the US when she was 10 years old, becoming DACAmented with help from MRNY. Zuleima helps lead MRNY’s resistance against attacks from the Trump administration to build a future of justice, dignity and respect for all. Zuleima is currently a enrolled in college, with a scholarship MRNY helped her secure.

Support the critical work of MRNY’s youth leaders

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