This year, we launched a new community initiative with a simple aim: to inspire innovative ideas for improving social equality and provide the financial support to help make these ideas a reality. The donors of the initiative believe in the power of young people to ignite change, and they wanted to give them the chance to make an impact in our community.
This initiative, called the Bay Area Inspire Awards, provided one-time cash awards of up to $10,000 to young people, ages 18-30, living and working in San Francisco or Alameda County. More than 75 local young people applied to implement a variety of community-oriented projects, and six ideas were chosen to come to fruition. Here are the winning ideas that have inspired us, and hopefully inspire you too:
AJ’s project will provide young people, ages 13-18, with hands-on STEM experience by engineering exhibits that will culminate in a haunted house event for the community.
Kori will conduct a 40-hour employment training program for 4-6 formerly incarcerated Alameda County residents and will also conduct outreach to 25 San Quentin prisoners about potential employment opportunities.
Using his award, Paul will conduct a feasibility study for a San Francisco Parent University. When implemented, the University will help caregivers become better-prepared advocates and partners in their children’s education.
Holley will use the award to pilot a public speaking training program that will serve at-risk transitional age youth from select San Francisco and Alameda County schools. The program is designed to provide enrichment programs to help youth thrive as leaders.
Megan will use her award to create online, mobile, and printed maps of Bay Area mental health services which include public transportation routes. These maps are designed to educate under-served populations that lack access to mental health.
Christian will use his award to organize teacher home visits to the families of 6th grade students at a middle school in Oakland as a way to build family-school trust and understanding.