Funded Initiatives

YDI supports youth development through a range of government and philanthropy-funded Initiatives that serve to build capacity across the youth services field.

Career Internship Network (CIN) Since 2003, YDI has led the Career Internship Network (CIN) to support high-quality internship programming for high school students at some of the City’s most notable cultural institutions. Funded by the Pinkerton and Altman Foundations, hosts CIN as a member-driven practice community focused on peer learning and support. In addition to regularly scheduled workshops, YDI provides training and on-site technical assistance to CIN members. CIN currently boasts over 30 active member institutions from major cultural and educational and environmental organizations across New York City, including museums, libraries, botanical gardens, science and performing arts centers, and many more.

Learn more about CIN and how to participate

My Brother's and Sister’s Keeper Youth Council (Formerly The Mayor's Youth Leadership Council) In partnership with the Child Center of New York, YDI leads the My Brother’s and Sister’s Keeper Council (MBSKYC), an initiative that seeks to involve young people as valued and active participants in policy issues that affect their peers and their own communities. YDI trains a diverse cohort of young adults from across New York City in leadership development, policy research, and youth philanthropy,.and supports them in developing community benefit projects and meaningful policy recommendations through participation in 10 Regional youth councils and an annual Youth Summit. YDI also directly supports local staff members who manage Regional Councils with training, coaching, and capacity building designed to improve their youth leadership practices. Contact MBKYC.

“Promote the Positive” Technical Assistance for all DYCD-funded Programs Since 2016, YDI has been a key partner to the New York City Department of Youth and Community Development (DYCD) in supporting strong Positive Youth Development and youth leadership practice and programming. YDI supports practitioners serving children, youth, and young adults who participate in DYCD’s out-of-school time programs including Internship Programs. Through cohort-based learning, site visits, and coaching, YDI supports core knowledge and critical skills, strengthen programs, sustain continuous improvement, build positive culture, and foster collaboration all in the service of enhancing youth leadership and ensuring positive outcomes for young people. Participation in this initiative is open to all DYCD-funded programs.

Contact: Theodore Phillips-

Learning to Work Initiative Through the Learning to Work Initiative, YDI provides implements training and support for implementation of the Office of Post-Secondary Readiness’ Learning to Work (LTW) curriculum, which focuses on career development for students in alternative education settings who are over-age and under-credited. The LTW Initiative supports school leaders in Transfer Schools and Young Adult Borough Academies- including both educational and community partner staff- to enhance their implementation of LTW’s job readiness, career exploration, and academic and student support activities. The LTW initiative assists some 80 programs citywide, serving nearly 19,000 students.

Contact: Pardeice Powell McGoy-

School Time Lab The Office of Post-Secondary Readiness also funds YDI’s School Time Lab, and initiative to enhance the implementation of Positive Youth Development practices in high schools, with the goal of strengthening student engagement and promoting post-secondary readiness. School Time Lab supports teams of high school staff- including teachers, guidance counselors, assistant principals, and other support staff- through cohort-based learning. School teams have opportunities during a series of full-day training to explore current research on best practices, brainstorm around practice challenges and implementation of strong youth development practice,a s well as additional support programming based on the needs of cohort members.

Contact: Pardeice Powell McGoy-


Mentored Internship Program In partnership with Workforce Professionals Training Institute and funded through a collaboration between the Administration for Children’s Services and the Pinkerton Foundation, YDI assists foster care agencies in providing youth aging out of care with supportive internship placements. The Mentored Internship Program (MIP) offers these young people “in-house” internship opportunities within the agencies that serve them, and ensures that each young person has a mentor to support them as they learn on the job. YDI supports the initiative through technical assistance and a facilitated learning community to help agencies plan their internship programs, identify mentor and program supervisors to manage and effectively problem-solve initiative challenges. In 2019 the initiative expanded to an additional four agencies.

Contact: Theodore Phillips-