In August 2011, New York City Young Men’s Initiative (YMI) was created as a public-private partnership to address increasing disparities among black and Latino men between the ages of 16 and 24 in education, employment, health and justice. The YMI mission is to develop and champion policies, programs and partnerships that holistically support the success of young men of color throughout NYC. Under the de Blasio Administration, the budget and scope of YMI has expanded to serve all genders.
YMI accomplishes its mission through broad policy recommendations, changes and agency reforms and by connecting the city’s young men of color to individuals, opportunities and organizations that improve the quality of their lives and lead them to a more successful future.
YMI prides itself on being a leading model of municipal action that engages agencies and community organizations across NYC to invest in the successful future of its young men of color. In February 2014, three years after the launch of YMI and heavily reflective of YMI’s efforts, President Barack Obama launched the My Brother’s Keeper (MBK) Challenge to address persistent opportunity gaps facing boys and young men of color and to ensure that all young Americans can reach their full potential.
On February 27, 2015, YMI held its first annual MBK/YMI Community Convening to align our work with MBK’s milestones and local priorities. During the gathering, YMI’s partner agencies, youth and local leaders worked together to share and discuss new strategies, to better align existing programs and policy priorities with YMI objectives, and to form comprehensive solutions that will improve disparity gaps among young men of color throughout NYC.