Forward Promise aims to disrupt the cycle of dehumanization that is occurring in the lives of BYMOC and threatens to derail their life success by creating pathways to healing, growing, and thriving. Through this program, Forward Promise aims to seed new approaches by youth-serving systems to address health and trauma that are grounded in the lived experiences and cultural values, norms, and traditions of BYMOC, and the knowledge of community organizations who work with BYMOC every day. Learnings from the Partnering with Systems to Disrupt Dehumanization grantees may be useful in advancing a greater understanding of what it means for BYMOC to heal, grow, and thrive, and provide concrete examples of the role that culturally responsive youth-serving systems play in the health of BYMOC.
Through this solicitation, Partnering with Systems to Disrupt Dehumanization will support up to seven organizations to partner with a local or regional youth-serving system to increase the understanding of issues faced by BYMOC in these systems and the historical role of dehumanization by systems; uplift the current disparities that exist in the public system; deepen knowledge of culturally responsive approaches as effective strategies for addressing trauma and promoting healing; devise a plan for working together to test approaches; and identify sustainable opportunities to change the way these systems do business and approach their work with BYMOC.
Up to seven organizations will receive a grant of up to and including $150,000 in total over an 18-month period to support the planning, implementation, and evaluation of partnership efforts between community-based organizations and youth-serving systems such as juvenile justice, child welfare, education, housing, and health provision within their communities. Lead applicants can come from any members of the partnership; however, preference will be given to those that are community-based organizations. From our previous work, we have found they are uniquely positioned to help systems understand and mitigate the impact of trauma on BYMOC, with many already partnering to provide services to improve outcomes for BYMOC. As such, we seek to support existing partnerships at varying stages of their development, with younger partnerships primarily focusing their efforts on strengthening and formalizing the partnerships, while more mature ones may already be ready to pilot and evaluate new approaches to better serve BYMOC.