To create systemic change, steps need to be taken for alums in the field of Creative Youth Development (CYD) to enter into, inform, and begin to change the often closed-off worlds of power and privilege in philanthropy.
With a desire to learn and deepen our commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion in every aspect of Mass Cultural Council, we wish to provide opportunities for CYD alums to find support with each other, to utilize and build platforms for their voices and visions, and to work together to build more equitable programs, networks, and systems.
Young people who identify as Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) represent approximately 80% of the young people in the Creative Youth Development programs we fund in Massachusetts. However, these demographics are largely underrepresented in leadership, staff, and teaching roles in the broader cultural field of Massachusetts.
With this in mind, Mass Cultural Council is forming a BIPOC CYD Alumni Council to create a solid place for youth voice on our team, in our Agency, and in the field. Nine alumni (ages 18 to 24) will be chosen from current YouthReach grantees and will serve in a paid position for a six-month pilot, with preference given to BIPOC youth.
Alumni Council members will:
- take leadership roles in bi-weekly CYD Community Meetings
- hold monthly Alumni Council meetings
- contribute to the communications for the Agency
- have opportunities to establish cross-sector partnerships and connections with mentors
- participate as thought partners in agency meetings
- design a creative summary of their experience
Alumni Council members will also work with Mass Cultural Council’s CYD team to embody and fuel the values and goals of CYD in creative expression, youth leadership, social and racial justice, and collective action.