In its first year, the Neighborhood Leadership Initiative, made up of two youth advisory councils of young people ages 13-16, is taking on some of the most pressing issues facing young people in both the Rogers Park and New City communities.

Five Things You Should Know

Root Causes:

For both councils the purpose is to discuss, analyze and come up with promote peace and equity in New City and Rogers Park.  Youth on both councils develop problem-solving skills that lead to understanding the root causes of violence in order to develop effective solutions.

Safe Space for Dialogue and Healing:

Both councils provide a safe space for young people to talk about controversial issues, hear different perspectives, humanize one another, and build empathy and listen to each others stories.

Authentic Youth and Adult Interaction:

We provide several opportunities for youth and adults to have meaningful dialogue.  At the Mikva Leadership cafes students on the council meet with local political officials, business owners, academics and other community leaders to talk about leadership, solutions and play games.

We make Research Fun:

Youth members learn the value of research in creating effective solutions.  By the end of their time with Mikva students have created and analyzed surveys, led 1:1 interviews and focus groups and done research on global best practices to reduce violence and promote peace.

The Youth Councils are Inspiring and Dynamic:

Mikva pushes all young people to truly bring their authentic self to the work. We have a lot of fun and bring high energy during every workshop. We meet young people where they are at and we never stop moving. Through field trips, leadership cafes and retreats we expose the group to new experiences and provide continuous mentorship.  The group loves giving each other compliments and are involved in almost every aspect of the council and sessions. We believe students have to own the space.

To get involved: Please contact Quabeeny Daniels via email.

Upcoming Events

  • New City Leadership Cafe: May 9th, 4:30pm-6:00pm (location TBD)
  • Rogers Park Participatory Budgeting Assembly: Sometime in May.