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Mayor Bloomberg Announces Online Competition for Black and Latino Young Men

Young men can win $5,000 toward business development, employment or education

young black boy smilingMayor Michael R. Bloomberg, Deputy Mayor for Health and Human Services Linda I. Gibbs, Young Men’s Initiative Director Jahmani Hylton and Ashoka Changemakers President Diana Wellshave launched “My Voice, Our City: What Will You Do?,” an online competition encouraging black and Latino young men to offer ideas that could help reduce racial and ethnic disparities in New York City.

“The Young Men’s Initiative was created to reduce the disparities holding back too many young black and Latino men,” said Mayor Bloomberg. “By working together, we can help more young men take control of their lives and futures.”

The Ashoka Changemakers Competition is open to all organizations and individuals that have a presence in New York City and have a clear plan to implement their entry in one or more of New York City’s five boroughs. Ideas should reflect the theme of the challenge and address one or more of the following topics:

  • Business Development: What is your idea for a business that would address an unmet need or area of potential in your community? What’s unique about this business model and how would it benefit your community?
  • Employment Opportunities: What do you think are some successful ways to increase youth and young adult access to employment opportunities? What are your ideas to develop/redevelop or expand an existing program(s)?
  • College Pathways: What do you see as significant opportunities to connect more young adults to post-secondary education? What are your ideas to redevelop those efforts?

Proposals should be measurable and sustainable, driven by original ideas and with a financing mechanism, or plan, in place. Prizes include $36,000 in total unrestricted funding to use towards the implementation or growth of the projects proposed in top entries.

“We are excited to tap into the creativity, achievement and entrepreneurship that already exist within New York City’s neighborhoods,” said Deputy Mayor Gibbs. “This competition is a chance for young men to propose ideas, share their thoughts and be empowered to help build a better City.”

“Ashoka excels at uncovering solutions wherever they exist and connecting them so that they work together to accelerate positive change,” said Ashoka President Diana Wells. “We are particularly excited to be bringing these important voices and solutions to the forefront of innovation in New York City as part of the Young Men’s Initiative.”

For more information about the competition and how to enter, visit www.myvoiceourcity.com