Youth Development Network

Youth Development Network


Calling all Sacramento region youth! We're seeking members for our Grants Advisory Board for Youth (GABY). GABY is a program in collaboration with Youth Development Network in which regional high school students learn about philanthropy and provide support to youth-led community projects through grants.

Learn more about GABY and apply by November 25 at 6 p.m. here:

📸 Carmen Ross, Charm Photography
Our President & CEO Cathy Rodriguez Aguirre and Vice President, Juan P. Novello had a chance to talk with the Youth Development Network about the state of the Latinx community in our Greater Sacramento Region. Listen here!

"Young people in our community don’t often feel like they have an opportunity to express their opinion in a tangible way or make a change," Kismet Kairon, a leader with Youth Voices Sacramento, said at a recent convening of groups that received funding from the Foundation’s Grants Advisory Board for Youth (GABY). Youth Voices Sacramento used a portion of its GABY grant to make a difference by creating a website with links to literacy-related resources relevant to students, parents, and teachers. Check out the website here:

With guidance from our partners at Youth Development Network, members of our GABY Board awarded $5,000 to five youth-led projects in the Sacramento region this year. Since 2003, GABY has awarded more than $500,000 to support projects important to young people in our community!
Today, some of our staff participated in Strengths-Based Development workshops, a learning community designed to provide us with a better understanding of group dynamics and the impact of strengths identification in organizational effectiveness. A great way to learn more about our strengths and help us learn how to better support one another. Thank you Youth Development Network for this training, we loved it
Together with our fundholders, the Foundation granted more than $615,000 to nonprofits last week! Local organizations like Midtown Parks, Youth Development Network, PBS KVIE, Camp Nefesh, Folsom Historical Society, and many more are among the grantees. Thank you to all who give in the Sacramento region and beyond!

To learn about opening a personalized charitable fund to support the nonprofits vital to you and your loved ones, visit
Here are some of the photographs young people in our area took in the past year for a visual arts project, "At Home Student Film Photography."

The project was one of five funded by the youth leaders on our Grants Advisory Board for Youth (GABY), coordinated in partnership with Youth Development Network. Each project was designed and completed by young people in our region and tied to the theme “Promoting Adaptability and Rebuilding Through Community Equity.”

Members of GABY noticed that many of this year’s projects embraced art as a medium to express the range of emotional responses young people felt during the past year—just as these photos do.
Do you LOVE posting on FB Stories? Would you like to get PAID for posting on FB Stories? I am casting for people who are using this new feature to connect with loved ones. We are searching for heartwarming, meaningful, uplifting Facebook stories about personal triumphs and victories they have experienced lately.
Some examples include:

• Helping a friend through a hard time
• How your pet has helped your mental health
• Celebrating reaching a personal goal/ victory through hard work
• How you like to volunteer in your community and who it benefits
• Any other positive and uplifting story personal to you
If you’d like to share with me why you like using FB Stories over your Instagram or Facebook, I’d love to hear from you! Pitching in progress now and if your story is selected by our creative team, you will be PAID!

DM or email me ([email protected]) if you would like to submit. Thank you!
Flashback to a lunchtime celebration with Grants Advisory Board for Youth (GABY) members (now alumnae!) and team members from the Foundation and Youth Development Network. Looking forward to the day when we can gather like this again!
The youth leaders who make up our Grants Advisory Board for Youth (GABY) funded five youth-led programs this year, all of which were highlighted during recent virtual convening:

⭐ 4-H On the Wild Side, an environmental education project
⭐ Social Justice: Engineering Change, a visual arts project
⭐ At Home Student Film Photography, a visual arts project
⭐ Equity in the Community, a student directed documentary
⭐ Arts Matters, a visual arts project

Each project was designed by young people in our region, tied to the theme “Promoting Adaptability and Rebuilding Through Community Equity.” It didn’t escape the Board’s notice that many of this year’s projects embraced art as a medium to express adaptability and equity.

“That really impressed the Board, and all of us who work with GABY. These students pushed their projects forward while facing obstacles previous grantees haven't encountered. Quite simply, it's been inspiring,” said Carmen Ross, who leads the program at the Foundation in collaboration with Youth Development Network.

For more information about GABY, which seeks to engage local youth through service learning and philanthropy, please visit
Thanks to Adrian Ruiz for sharing Roger Hart's Ladder of Participation—a useful tool to understand genuine engagement in programs meant for young people—with our Community Impact Committee this week. As Executive Director of Youth Development Network, Adrian knows this stuff inside and out, and he and his team have applied it in their work with our Grants Advisory Board for Youth (GABY) for years.

"The magic starts to happen in rungs 5, 7, and 8," he said at the meeting. "And that’s right where GABY is doing something special.”
We are proud to share that our West Sacramento Urban Farm Program Manager Sara Bernal is participating in the inaugural cohort of the Youth Development Network’s Nueva Epoca Early Career Development Program! Nueva Epoca is a leadership program designed for early/mid-career, high-potential individuals and designed to establish a network of professionals to strengthen Latinx engagement in leadership for the post-pandemic world. We are beyond excited for Sara and the wonderful things she will accomplish through this program. To learn more about Nueva Epoca and the inagurual cohort, follow the link provided.
We are excited to announce our latest grant partners under the JBMF LIFT Initiative.

The initiative supports 25 Central Valley organizations with $1M in total funding. The latest grants include $450K to provide for leadership development, staffing, technology capacity, or strategic planning.

LIFT grants are aimed at lifting the voices of a diverse group of emerging and established community leaders who are working across the Central Valley to protect First Amendment freedoms, one of JBMF’s two pinnacle program areas, along with educational support for English and Dual Language Learners.

Congratulations to the following organizations:

Black Youth Leadership Project -BYLP
Breakbox Thought Collective- Fresno Black Girl Magic Project
California Center for Civic Participation
Central Valley Latino Leadership Academy
Chicano Latino Youth Leadership Project, Inc. - CLYLP
Faith in the Valley-Fresno
Ivanhoe Sol -
Little Manila Rising
Stanislaus Community Foundation
Nate Nvil Solutions
Stanislaus County Youth Empowerment Program
PRO Youth and Families
Social Justice Politicorps -
Stanislaus Cradle to Career Partnership: Youth Power Building Network (Stanislaus Community Foundation)
YDN - Nueva Epoca Early Career Development Program
Youth Development Network
During two-days seminar this week, in collaboration with Youth Development Network, we successfully detected and our talents and weaknesses, founding the mechanism how to be even more successful. We are proud team shown mutual great passion for personal and team development.
Thank you to our pal's Youth Development Network for introducing us to "I'm In" and "I'm out" to help open and close virtual workshops and sessions!
Take a peek at this year's (virtual) Summer Institute, a three-day college-readiness convening for young men of color who are part of our Capital Area Promise Scholars program.

These bright students are pursuing their educational dreams during truly unprecedented times. Our message to them (which doubled as the Summer Institute's theme): Seize.The.Moment.

Thank you to our committed Capital Area Promise Scholars partners: Improve Your Tomorrow (who put this video together!), Sacramento Cal-SOAP, Youth Development Network, Innovation Bridge, and Paper Wings.

Learn more about the Capital Area Promise Scholars program at
Thanks to the generosity of so many in our community, we are rapidly deploying emergency funds to nonprofits in the capital area! The first round of funding from our Sacramento Region Disaster Relief Fund is comprised of awards to 19 organizations that provide vital services within the region — including emergency assistance, food security, healthcare, and childcare — and face severe operational challenges and non-recoverable expenses as a result of the novel coronavirus pandemic. In total, we awarded nearly $150,000 in flexible, one-time grants in this initial round.

Recipients include American River Conservancy, Behavioral Educational Assessment Services, Community Against Sexual Harm (CASH), Gender Health Center, Project Access, Inc.; RISE, Inc.; Saint John's Program for Real Change; Sierra College Foundation; Single Mom Strong- Sacramento; Society for the Blind; Starting Point for Refugee Children; Sunburst Projects; "The Gardens" Family Care Community Center, Inc.; The Salvation Army of Northern California; Twin Lakes Food Bank; Upper Room Dining Hall Placerville California; Verge Center for the Arts; Yolo Hospice; and Youth Development Network.

Awards from the Relief Fund are made on a rolling basis, with weekly grant reviews by Foundation staff and a community advisory committee. Nonprofits in El Dorado, Placer, Sacramento, and Yolo counties can learn more about applying for emergency funding on our website at

To learn how to support the Foundation's COVID-19 response efforts, please visit Creating life-changing experiences for youth that lead to long-term success

Providing customized developmental solutions to educational and business organizations that are dedicated to building environments and cultures where people are valued for who they are and encouraged to become their best.

Operating as usual


Season 6 Episode 02: Dr. Stacey Chimimba Ault discusses and explains what restful leadership looks like and why it is important. Listen here:

On the second episode of this season Dr. Stacey, founder of The Race and Gender Equity Project, speaks on what kind of leadership is not sustainable in the long run and how restful leadership helps do less so you can do more. To help Dr. Stacey's work please fill out the Restful Leadership Survey at the link below:


Another wonderful strengths based session with the Nehemiah Emerging Leaders Program.


Just a friendly reminder that applications are due in one week! If you have any questions please email us at [email protected]


Season 6 Episode 01: Juan Novello & Cathy Rodriguez discuss the state of the Latinx community in the Sacramento region. Listen here!

Kicking off Season 6 we are honored to welcome Juan Novello and Cathy Rodriguez to discuss the state of the Latinx community in the Sacramento Region.

Photos from Grants Advisory Board for Youth (GABY)'s post 11/16/2022

Photos from Grants Advisory Board for Youth (GABY)'s post


Do you know an emerging leader who would benefit from being part of a program that changes lives? Nueva Epoca Fellows are moving up in their careers and civic engagement and altering the face of leadership on our region’s boards and commissions.

Building on a highly successful 3-cohort pilot, Nueva Epoca is launching Cohort IV in February 2023 with an enhanced curriculum based on evaluation of the pilot. The program is open to Latino/Hispanic/Latinx people and those who wish to learn leadership through a Latin lens. Nominate an employee, colleague, friend or relative now at Deadline November 30, 2022.


We call this the lean-in effect.


Building the shared aspiration of the using our favorite design tool

Photos from Youth Development Network's post 10/08/2022

is building on its strengths.

Imagine how much wrong we can fix by focusing on what is right.

Photos from Youth Development Network's post 10/08/2022

Have you heard of the Fresno DRIVE Initiative? They are doing BIG things while practicing a community strengths based approach. We are honored to be their facilitators and partners on this change making journey.
Thank you for all that you are doing to build a stronger .

Photos from Youth Development Network's post 10/06/2022

Living out our core values while tuning up and giving ourselves much needed TLC.

Photos from Youth Development Network's post 10/05/2022


at this years staff retreat day one.

Photos from Youth Development Network's post 09/29/2022

What an inspirational evening with members of the Woodland community as we put the finishing touches on their 10 year youth development plan. The youth and parents/guardians really brought the 🔥❤️🙌🏽 to our conversations.


Thank you City Council of Lincoln for giving us the opportunity to present the blueprint of a 10 year citywide youth development initiative. has done an excellent job incorporating the Youth Development Framework for Practice into their culture and climate and looks forward to partnering with other youth serving systems to ensure that every young person in Lincoln gets what they need to thrive and succeed.


❤️ the sound of strengths based dialogue in the morning!
Thank you for your partnership in creating more strengths based leaders.

Photos from Youth Development Network's post 08/18/2022

Thank you for an awesome strengths finding day. We look forward to more strengths based dialogue with your team in the new school year. Thank you .oficial for hosting this event.

City offering funding for local organizations to host youth events on Friday and Saturday nights - City Express 08/12/2022

City offering funding for local organizations to host youth events on Friday and Saturday nights - City Express


City offering funding for local organizations to host youth events on Friday and Saturday nights - City Express Funding is available for local community-based organizations to host Friday and Saturday night events for youth in priority Sacramento neighborhoods across the city. The City of Sacramento’s Office of Youth Development today released a request for proposals (RFP) for $1.3 million in funding to sup...

Photos from Youth Development Network's post 08/06/2022

Felicidades Cohort 3 of the Nueva Epoca program! 🎉 Yesterday the Sac State Alumni Center was filled with amazing individuals who are already making a change within their boards state wide!


A giant thank you to all of the Administrators from for naming, claiming, and aiming your strengths at a fantastic new school year.


Congratulations to all who attended the 4-day Youth Development Institute (YDI) hosted by Woodland Joint Unified School District. Great things are happening in the community of Woodland for young people.

Photos from Youth Development Network's post 07/29/2022

In day 3 of 4 of the Youth Development Institute we spotlighted the impact of leadership styles on our young people and the importance of conquering adultism.


Positive vibrations at day two of the Youth Development Institute.


Got our Dj’s getting their set ready for the camp dance later! Working hard to play even harder 🙌🏽


Strengths League relay race complete! Now time to discuss the strategies used to help reach the finish line. Day 2 of Esparto Leadership Camp still going strong 💪🏽


Day 1 of 4 of our Youth Development Institute just kicked off in lovely Woodland, CA. Love the vibe!


Day three of four gave us the opportunity to sit in the sacred circle to discuss the toxicity of adultism and the power of authentic youth voice and choice. Down with tokenism and decoration!

City of Sacramento Career Opportunities | Employment, Classification & Development 07/21/2022

City of Sacramento Career Opportunities | Employment, Classification & Development

Community Partner Job Posting Opportunity:

The Department of Youth, Parks, & Community Enrichment is currently recruiting to fill its director position.

Here’s a direct link to the job description and application

The ideal candidate has a strong understanding of modern public administration practices, planning, organizing, staffing, and leading. They will be fiscally savvy with a human resources and public relations mindset. The successful candidate will navigate political situations with poise and serve as a respectable representative of the City. They will be an excellent communicator, meeting with community members on a frequent and regular basis.

The next YPCE Director should be passionate about serving the community and youth. They will be customer-service-focused and an excellent collaborator. Handling adversity is integral to this position, as is being responsive to incoming inquiries from multiple stakeholders. The ideal candidate will have strategies to retain talent and continue to foster a culture of compassion and positivity.

Does this sound of interest to you or someone you know -- please share.

City of Sacramento Career Opportunities | Employment, Classification & Development If this is the first time you are applying using our online job application, you will need to create an account and select a Username and Password. This application can be saved and used to apply for more than one job opening. Please note that applications that do not list related job experience in....

Photos from Youth Development Network's post 07/20/2022

Today was day 2 of 4 for the SCOE/YCOE/Region 3 Youth Development Institute. The focus was positive relationship building as key to engaging our young people.

Photos from Youth Development Network's post 06/27/2022

Building upon our


Bringing back an oldie but goodie today in Marin County.

Photos from Youth Development Network's post 06/24/2022

A giant hug to our entire YDN organization for an amazing day of team building, courageous dialogue, and daring to dream BIG in community.

Videos (show all)

❤️ the sound of strengths based dialogue in the morning! Thank you @movecafwd for your partnership in creating more stre...
A giant thank you to all of the Administrators from #WesternPlacerUnifiedSchoolDistrict for naming, claiming, and aiming...
A little “catch and flow” to center ourselves at this mornings YDN Retreat.  It felt wonderful to finally be together af...
Building a better tomorrow brick by brick.
Henry Ortiz is a formerly incarcerated Community Healer and  Social Justice Community Organizer. During his 18 years of ...
At today’s YDN virtual retreat we tapped into the power of #qigong breathing techniques with Master Aton.   It’s crazy h...
We ❤️our opening and closing circle tradition. Set the intention, build relationships, aim for greatness.
The youth developers in Sacramento are getting ready for the summer BIGTIME.  Bring the noise! #ypce #sacramento #youthd...
Band practice.
And yes we are going to party for the strengths-based approach! #relationshipbuilding #teambuilding #change #fun#socialj...
A brotherhood forged in #strengths. #capsbrotherhood2019
It’s #strengths development time down in the southland of the West Coast. Brand new for you!




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