Building Leaders in Innovative New Giving (BLING) is YLI’s youth philanthropy program in San Francisco. BLING is using a social justice model which aims to engage youth in critical thinking to fund and support youth-led projects that directly address important issues and inequities affecting San Francisco youth and their communities. BLING engages youth leaders ages 14–18 interested in building youth power to address inequities through philanthropic giving. This strategy is led through popular education approaches, meaningful youth-led action research, and decision making that is accountable to youth across SF. Together, youth grantmakers and youth program officers fund $60,000 annually in two grant cycles. In addition, BLING program officers work directly with funded projects to ensure their impact and sustainability.

Opportunities for paid internships in youth grantmaking are open to all San Francisco youth, age 15-18. Interested youth may apply at the beginning of the school year (Aug/Sept) of each year by submitting a completed application. Participants are expected to attend a mandatory orientation and weekly meetings for the duration of the school year.

Youth grant seekers can learn more about grant opportunities on the Minigrants 4 Youth page.

For more information contact: Natan Sebhatleab nsebhatleab@yli.org.

Community Action Model Youth Leadership Project

The Community Action Model Youth Leadership Project (CAM YLP) engages Bay Area youth, ages 18–24, who are interested in improving community health and making a positive change in San Francisco communities. Through the program, youth identify the inequities in their communities — the high density of liquor stores and advertisements promoting unhealthy behavior in low-income, for example — as well as the deep value and beauty of underrepresented communities that is often overlooked, exploited, and erased by those in power. As they develop the language and framing to share their experiences and confront damaging stereotypes, youth develop the tools to become powerful advocates for themselves and their communities. Following the YLI model for youth development, the youth work directly with elected officials, offering policy recommendations that improve conditions for the city’s youth.

In 2017-2018, CAM youth leaders have been researching price promotions — marketing ploys that the tobacco industry is using to circumvent minimum price laws and entice people to purchase their products. The campaign builds on 7 years of work and significant milestones, shared in the CAM and TURF blog posts.

The program is open to all transitional age (18-24) youth in the Bay Area. Applications are open in Spring (late February-early March). Participants are expected to attend a 1-day retreat in March, followed by weekly meetings throughout the year.

For more information contact: Anastasia Mallillin at amallillin@yli.org

San Francisco Friday Night Live Network

San Francisco Friday Night Live Network (SF FNL) is a citywide network of chapters comprised of middle and high school aged youth and adult partners engaged as active leaders and resources in their communities. The SF FNL Chapters implement community change projects and are supported by YLI staff to ensure chapters are aligned with the Standards of Practice and Operating Principles of chapters across the 52 counties in California. Our SF FNL Network builds upon our youth-led action research strategy in order to develop community change projects based in data driven recommendations that seek to implement sustainable change. Current SF FNL Chapters include Questioning Unspoken Underage Drinking (QUAAD) out of Mission High School and Washington Positive Peer Pressure (WPX3) out of George Washington High School – both chapters are working to reduce the prevalence of underage drinking and focus on changing norms by working with peers to expose perceptions and realities of underage drinking and uses positive social norming approaches through media campaigns highlighting positive peer pressure.

For more information contact: Amaya Gonzalez at agonzalez@yli.org

San Francisco Alcohol Prevention Coalition

Over the past 5 years, YLI has led the San Francisco Alcohol Prevention Coalition, which works with 4 community-based organizations to address the larger social patterns — like the density of liquor stores and advertisements — that encourage alcohol and drug abuse among low-income communities, communities of color, and youth.

For more information contact: Fahad fqurashi@yli.org


Past Projects

  • HOPE SF engaged youth ages 15–19 in shaping a public housing revitalization project that prioritized current residents while investing in high-quality, sustainable housing and broad scale community development.