$15,000 / 2016
Youth Organizing Institute (YOI) was formed in 2010 to strengthen the voice of low-income students of color and their families in the debate about Wake County’s school diversity policy. The organization works to build the organizing and political capacity of youth of color through Summer Freedom Schools, seasonal trainings, and IPEPs (Individual Political Education Programs) as well as to remove the structural barriers (e.g., transportation, sibling care, financial cost) to youth engagement in organizing and policy work. Last year, YOI organized North Carolina’s first statewide Black Lives Matter Youth Assembly. Hazen’s renewal grant will enable YOI to continue to develop the political and organizing capacity of youth as well as help their alumni conduct direct actions at strategic sites and moments. It also will support YOI’s work to organize students and parents in order to end out-of-school-suspensions, a reduction of cops in our schools, availability of restorative justice programs, and a civil review board composed of the community to oversee complaints against School Resource Officers.