“Coro has helped me to develop leadership skills necessary to be a young changemaker. Because of my experience, I am informed about and able to voice how city-wide decisions affect both me and my community.”
– Shuba Maniram, Coro Youth Alumnus, Middlebury College
“Back in 2004, Coro gave me my first opportunity to experience the workings of city government. Those of us in elected office are well-served by the intellectual curiosity of young people who ask questions that would never occur to adults and have a more grounded sense of what’s happening in their communities and schools.”
– Ritchie Torres, Coro alumnus and New York City Council Member
“Coro understands the necessary tools needed to thrive as a youth leader in the 21st century.”
– Frantzy Luzincourt, Coro Youth Alumnus, Macaulay Honors College at The City College of New York
“The skills I learned from Coro have helped me communicate with adults who contributed to my PB project. My Coro training helped prepare me for the whole process, from connecting to people, to setting up our PB project board, to voting day.”
– Tenzin Zenden, Coro Youth Participant, Academy of American Studies
PARTICIPATORY BUDGETING YOUTH FELLOWSHIP
In partnership with the New York City Council and the Participatory Budgeting Project (PBP), Coro’s newest program will build the leadership skills of young New Yorkers who envision a greater role for youth in government decision making and civic change. The Participatory Budgeting Youth Fellowship (PBYF) will offer selected high school students intensive training and hands-on experience to expand youth involvement in the participatory budgeting (PB) process and bring greater youth voice to the work of the City Council. By empowering youth as civic changemakers, PBYF will make a real and lasting impact in neighborhoods throughout New York City.
WHAT IS PARTICIPATORY BUDGETING (PB)?
PB is a democratic process in which community members decide how to spend part of a public budget. In New York, City Council Members choose to join Participatory Budgeting New York City (PBNYC), giving at least $1 million from their budget for district residents to vote on how it is spent. The year-long process begins with community members discussing local needs and then developing proposals to meet these needs. Proposed projects can include improvements to schools, parks, libraries, public housing, and other public or community spaces. Proposals are shared at public meetings, and then district residents vote on which projects to fund. For more information, click here.
Coro believes in lifting up youth voices and leading change. Since youth can play a vital role in improving the communities where they live, PBYF offers a unique combination of training, hands-on experience, and personalized guidance that prepares young people as civic change leaders. Key program features include:
Over the course of the program, participants receive intensive leadership training and skills-building in public speaking, facilitation, community assessment, and outreach to support their efforts to engage their peers and community members in the PB process.
PB Youth Fellows gain hands-on PB experience at their respective City Council District Offices, assisting with activities including youth outreach, volunteer recruitment, meeting facilitation, proposal development, and voter engagement.
PB Youth Fellows will receive guidance and coaching from Coro staff along with PBP and New York City Council partners to support their learning, leadership development, and professional growth throughout the program.
- Participants must be able to commit to a rigorous program schedule as follows:
- Three-week Summer Institute (July 31st through August 18th, 2017)
- Six Leadership Days (held on Saturdays or non-school days during school year)
- Monthly after-school meeting at Coro office
- 15-20 PB service hours per month at City Council District Office
Participants will earn a stipend for successful completion of the requirements listed above.
THE NETWORK PBYF brings together a network of civic-minded students of diverse backgrounds committed to lifting up youth voices and leading change. Upon graduation from the Fellowship, they join an accomplished community of Coro alumni from all industries and sectors who are dedicated to supporting one another and improving the City so that it is a better place to live, work, and learn.
THE KNOWLEDGE PB Youth Fellows gain direct experience with government and the PB process, while developing leadership skills to serve as PB ambassadors and liaisons to youth and other underrepresented communities in their City Council districts, including people of color, immigrants, public housing residents, and LGBTQ and differently-abled individuals.
THE SKILLS Participants will gain the skills to engage their peers and other community members in democratic decision-making, and the opportunity to make a real and lasting impact in their neighborhoods.
WHO SHOULD APPLY?
Two students per participating City Council district will join our first class of PB Youth Fellows. We aim to select a pool that reflects the demographic diversity of New York City and the participating districts.
- Entering 10th – 12th grade in the coming school year
- Lives or attends school in one of the participating City Council Districts
- Recommended or recruited by one of the participating City Council Members or District Offices
- Demonstrated interest in public service, government, and/or civic engagement
- Desire to strengthen leadership skills and be a community changemaker
Applications are currently closed and will reopen in May 2018.
PBYF is a partnership with the New York City Council and the Participatory Budgeting Project. Funding support has also been provided by Members of the New York City Council, Brooklyn Community Foundation, Ford Foundation, The Staten Island Foundation and the National Grid Foundation.