In just two years, the RVA League for Safer Streets, a basketball-plus-education program for young men from Richmond communities with high crime rates, has had an extraordinary peace-making impact in the lives of participants—and on the city at large. Founded by two formerly incarcerated Richmonders who bring to the table experience and insight wrought by decades behind bars, the League is dedicated to keeping people out of prison, and helping those who are returning to become successful members of their communities. The article that follows contains audio quotes from the League's founders about pivotal experiences in their lives in and outside of prison.
When North Minneapolis natives DeAnna and Roger Cummings founded Juxtaposition Arts (JXTA), they envisioned “a space where kids could have the opportunity to understand what they're good at.” More than two decades later (and with help from LISC), JXTA is a creative and entrepreneurial outlet for hundreds of young people, a force of community revitalization, and a flourishing anchor institution capable of leading a $14 million capital campaign to expand their impact into more neighborhoods, for more youth.
September 15 marks the beginning of Hispanic Heritage Month. To celebrate, we’re spotlighting the extraordinary staff and clients of the Latin American Youth Center, a longtime LISC partner in Washington, D.C. In its 50 years, LAYC has welcomed and served 27,000 youth, many of them recent immigrants, helping connect them to education, mentors, housing, work, mental health services and each other. This kind of work makes an enormous difference in young lives and in our communities, and we’re honored to be part of it: we’ve invested nearly $2 million in LAYC’s people and programs, including financing the purchase of the group’s home base in the Columbia Heights neighborhood.