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Ladder for Leaders Applications Now Available!


DYCD’s Ladders for Leaders is a nationally recognized program that offers high school and college students the opportunity to participate in paid professional summer internships with leading corporations, non-profit organizations and government agencies in New York City. Ladders for Leaders gives students a unique opportunity to explore their interests and discover new ones through:

  • Pre-employment Training: Receive help with résumé and cover letter writing, and interviewing skills. Learn essential workplace readiness skills and business etiquette
  • Paid Summer Internships: Paid internship opportunities available in a variety of industries to accommodate student interests
  • Opportunity to join a growing Alumni Network: Broad network of alumni, post-internship opportunities and networking events open only to past participants of the program.

Applications are evaluated based on academic performance, response to an essay question and résumé. Please click here to apply, or call Youth Connect at 1-800-246-4646 to learn more.

Richard Murphy Leadership Awards

On December 4, the inaugural Richard Murphy Leadership Awards presentation was made to former New York City Mayor David Dinkins. In 1990, Murphy was appointed by Mayor Dinkins as the commissioner of Youth Services, a precursor to the New York City Department of Youth and Community Development (DYCD). One of the most prominent outcomes of the administration was the creation of the Beacon program, which has since expanded to 91 centers across the city. The event was hosted by the Partnership for After School Education (PASE).

New York Cares Winter Coat Drive


For the last 29 years, New York Cares has organized the city’s largest winter coat drive gathering over 1.8 million winter coats. Just last year, with the help of caring New Yorkers, they collected and distributed 109,000 winter coats to families who would have otherwise faced a long cold winter without one. This year, their goal is to collect 125,000 winter coats, and with the City’s support, we know they can do it. Click here for your local donation site.

Three Bears Holiday Bash

The Three Bears Holiday Bash is a variety show that celebrates the holiday season in song, dance and puppetry. This production quickly becomes a comedy of errors when Baby Bear invites Santa to star in Mama and Papa Bear's annual holiday show. The audience also gets to join in on the fun with a "12 Days of Christmas" sing-a-long during the performance! Written and directed by the Swedish Cottage Marionette Theatre’s longtime Artistic Director, Bruce Cannon, The Three Bears Holiday Bash draws from the stories of Hanukkah, The Night Before Christmas, and Kwanzaa, making it a great way to get into the holiday spirit! Please visit the theatre’s website for showtimes and ticket information.

Family Art Project

Explore the gardens and make nature-inspired creations each Saturday and Sunday morning, from 10:00am to 1:00pm, in the Sally & Gilbert Kerlin Learning Center at the Wave Hill garden in the Bronx. Artist-led, hands-on workshops incorporating a range of techniques and natural materials introduce families to traditional and contemporary art-making around the world. Click here for full list of art projects.

NYBG Holiday Train Show


Model trains navigate painstakingly crafted miniatures of New York City’s built environment, all made entirely out of plant parts. The Statue of Liberty, the Brooklyn Bridge and Yankee Stadium are among the 150 landmarks that form a fantastically rendered city landscape built from seeds, bark, leaves and twigs, serviced by a robust half-mile of track, all nestled underneath the glass ceilings of the historic Enid A. Haupt Conservatory. This year the New York Botanical Garden Holiday Train Show showcases Midtown Manhattan’s famous skyscrapers with new replicas of the Empire State Building, Chrysler Building, 30 Rockefeller Center and St. Bartholomew’s Church.

Grand Central Train Show

The holiday season is a time of joy for kids of all ages and nothing says holiday enchantment quite like dazzled little faces watching in wonderment as model trains zip through tunnels, by subway stops, around familiar skyscrapers and through iconic cityscapes. To the delight of kids and railroad enthusiasts alike, the New York Transit Museum will continue its tradition of capturing hearts and imaginations at the 16th Annual Holiday Train Show at Grand Central Terminal running through the New Year. The theme of the holiday train show changes every year and the event is free and open to the public. For more information, please visit the NY Transit Museum website.

Kwanzaa Celebrations

This celebration of African-American heritage takes place December 26 to January 1 each year, and culminates in a feast and gift-giving ritual. The holiday is rooted in seven principles known as Nguzo Saba, which promotes unity, culture and community development. The City’s largest Kwanzaa celebrations both take place on December 30: the American Museum of Natural History hosts a one-night fete featuring African dance, spoken word, live musical performances and traditional crafts; Harlem’s Apollo Theater hosts dance, music and various family-friendly activities.

New Year’s Eve in Prospect Park

Join Prospect Park Alliance for this annual fireworks celebration! Help us kick off the New Year with fireworks, live music and more. Locations for viewing the fireworks include Grand Army Plaza, the Park’s West Drive, and along Prospect Park West between Grand Army Plaza and 9th Street. This event is free and open to the public, for more information click here.

Three Kings Day Celebration

El Museo del Barrio presents the 41st Annual Three Kings Day Parade! Enjoy live camels, colorful puppets, parrandas, music and dancing on this magical day. The parade will take place on Friday, January 5, 2018 at 11:00am to 12:30pm. The parade route begins on 106th Street and Lexington Avenue and ends on 115th Street and Park Avenue.

NYC Restaurant Week

Every summer and winter, NYC Restaurant Week returns with dining deals at restaurants all across New York. This semiannual promotional event produced by NYC & Company, where more than 380 restaurants offer three-course pre-fixe dining deals for both lunch ($29) and dinner ($42). From trendy newcomers to top-notch hotel restaurants to some of the city’s best fine-dining restaurants, this event is a great way to taste the city. Click here for list of restaurants and to book your table starting January 8, 2018.

Martin Luther King, Jr. Tribute Concert

The Brooklyn Music School views music and performance as the birthright of all people, an essential way that human beings connect with others and explore their creativity. Join them on Saturday, January 13, 2018, when they will be putting on a tribute concert for Martin Luther King Jr. Click here for more information.

The 32nd Annual Brooklyn Tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

New York City’s largest public celebration in honor of iconic civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. returns to BAM for the 32nd year. This event brings world-renowned activists, intellectuals, and civic leaders together with musicians and other performers to pay tribute to King’s legacy and keep his message alive. Click here to join BAM on Monday, January 15, 2018 for the full day of free events.

The Staten Island NAACP 8th Annual HBCU Experience College Fair

The NAACP works to ensure that every disadvantaged student and student of color graduates ready for college or a career by ensuring access to great teaching, fair discipline, equitable resources and challenging curriculum. And this year the Staten Island NAACP 8th Annual HBCU Experience College Fair will expand on this mission with workshops, on site admission assistance and even an after party for networking opportunities. Save the date, January 27, 2018, and click here to register.

2018 Spring Apollo Theater Internship

The Apollo Theater Academy Spring Internship Program provides High School students in their senior year with opportunities for professional and personal development as they explore administrative and managerial careers in the performing arts and entertainment industries. Click here for more information and application.

New York Drives

The New York Drives Program is a six week career training program that combines driving lessons with professional development workshops to help you qualify for Brooklyn Workforce Innovations’ (BWI) training programs: Brooklyn Woods ( skilled woodworking), Brooklyn Networks (telecommunications cable installation), and Made in NY (TV/film production assistant training).

MCU Scholarship

This year, MCU will award $71,000 in scholarship grants to college-bound graduating high school seniors, including nine memorial scholarships worth $5,000 each and thirteen grants of $2,000 each respectively. The deadline for scholarship submissions is end of business day on Friday, January 5, 2018. Click here for application and more information.

Yoga @ Brooklyn Library

Being a Brooklyn Library card holder not only gives you access to all the tech resources and allow you to borrow books from your local branch, but now it will give you access to free yoga classes all over Brooklyn. Classes take almost every day of the week; click here to see when a class will be near you.

Food Waste Microgrant


The NYC Department of Sanitation’s Foundation for New York’s Strongest hosted the first-ever NYC Food Waste Fair in July 2017. With over 1,000 attendees, this event was a one-stop-shop on how to prevent, recycle, and recover the more than 650,000 tons of food waste that New York City businesses throw away each year. This program picks up where the NYC Food Waste Fair left off! Providing up to $2,000, in combination with in-kind donations and guidance/mentorship, are available to businesses within the five boroughs of New York City. These microgrants will serve as a way to support NYC businesses as they transition to more sustainable waste management practices and to develop a cohort of diverse business types that can demonstrate best management practices to the larger NYC business community. Click here for more information; application deadline is January 8, 2018.

Lily Palmer Fry Memorial Trust

The Lily Palmer Fry Memorial Trust was established in 1954 to support and promote summer camp opportunities for underserved children. Special consideration is given to traditional camp programs that take urban children out of the city to experience the natural environment. The deadline for application to the Lily Palmer Fry Memorial Trust is February 1, 2018. Applicants will be notified of grant decisions by letter within two to three months after the proposal deadline. Bank of America serves as co-trustee of the Fry Memorial Trust, in conjunction with two relatives of Lily Palmer Fry. The Fry Memorial Trust prefers to fund "camperships" for children and no other expenses of the camp such as supplies, salaries, etc. Grants from the Fry Memorial Trust are one year in duration. Please find submission information on the website.

Student Leaders Program

Every year, Bank of America’s Student Leaders program connects 225 community-minded high school juniors and seniors to employment, skills development and service. These students are awarded paid summer internships with local nonprofits such as Boys and Girls Clubs of America and participate in a national leadership summit in Washington, D.C. The Student Leaders Summit focuses on skill building and creating a more civically engaged society. Student Leaders is part of Bank of America’s ongoing commitment to preparing young people for a brighter future. If you or someone you know has a passion of improving the community, click here to learn more about the eligibility criteria. Application deadline is February 2, 2018.

Have you discovered discoverDYCD?


Looking for an afterschool program in your neighborhood? Need information on improving reading skills or finding the nearest community center? The web application discoverDYCD allows you to search in multiple languages for DYCD-funded programs. You can search by borough, neighborhood or zip code, and discoverDYCD provides contact information, activities offered, and a mapping feature with navigation.

Categories of services include: Afterschool Programs, Family Support, Literacy Services, Youth Services and so much more! We hope you find discoverDYCD useful as you take advantage of the diverse resources and opportunities that New York City has to offer.

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