Cherise from our Midtown Community Court team stands in a moment of calm before a community outreach event where the team handed out hundreds of bags of food; PPE, including masks and gloves; coloring books and markers donated from Staples; and shoes, socks, and clothing to neighborhood residents in need during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Events happened over two days at Amsterdam Houses and in Times Square in midtown, New York.
A Zoom dance lesson for staff was exactly the work-from-home break our Midtown Community Court team needed. Thank you Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater for providing a beautiful short “Revelations Workshop with Hope Boykin” which is available to everyone on YouTube. “Making dance is an act of progress; it is an act of growth, an act of music, an act of teaching, an act of celebration, an act of joy.” — Alvin Ailey
The Brownsville Community Justice Center received the $100,000 Spark Prize from the Brooklyn Community Foundation for being an outstanding social justice nonprofit in Brooklyn. At a ceremony celebrating the award, Director Deron Johnston explains how the Justice Center over the last two years helped 87 youth get jobs, placed 60 youth in internships, engaged 5,347 residents and 30 businesses in placemaking and revitalization projects, helped 332 participants complete 7,458 hours of community service, trained two dozen entrepreneurs—four of whom launched businesses—and steered almost $500,000 in investments back to Brownsville.
Our staff of experts provide assistance and support to justice reformers around the country and the world. Members of our technical assistance team celebrate the conclusion of a roundtable conversation they helped organize about community courts. With them is Yulise Waters of Lone Star Justice Alliance, second from left, and Jose Egurbide of the Los Angeles City Attorney's Office, right, who participated in the roundtable.
Over 150 staff members from across the Center met to experience the many ways in which our programs foster safe, healthy, and vibrant communities. This first-of-its-kind staff gathering transformed the Center’s main office into an immersive experience exploring the many facets of our community-based programing. Staff members set up healing circles and an aromatherapy workshop, recreated a graffiti removal wall, and facilitated a video project to collect staff stories about what motivates their work.
In December, our Red Hook Community Justice Center celebrated current members and inductees of Youth Impact: Red Hook (formerly, Red Hook Youth Court). The program trains participants to facilitate restorative circles and workshops on conflict management and goal setting, and also connects them with college access support, mentors, and professional development opportunities. Photo credit: Shaniya Moore
Magistrates and government officials from the State of Chihuahua, Mexico, discuss the latest innovations in combatting intimate partner violence and human trafficking with our Gender and Family Justice team. The delegation focused on risk assessment and trauma-informed screening and observed the Integrated Domestic Violence Court in Brooklyn and the Queens Human Trafficking Intervention Court and the Hidden Victims Project in Queens.
Youth raised their voices for LGBTQ+ justice at our first LGBTQ+ youth talent night, hosted by the Youth Justice Board and Neighbors in Action Youth Center. The event sought to elevate the voices of young people in efforts to address the criminalization of LGBTQ+ youth of color.
At a recent Talent Development Council event, our staff practiced their interview skills with rounds of speed interviewing and networking exercises with other non-profit professionals, entrepreneurs, and leaders from across the Center. The Council works across our agency to attract, motivate, and retain productive, engaged employees.
Two New York City artists, Derek Fordjour and Shaun Leonardo, work with Project Reset to provide an arts-based alternative to court and a criminal record for people arrested on a low-level charge. Derek welcomed our team into his studio to discuss this work on our podcast, New Thinking. Photo credit: Samiha Amin Meah
Brownsville residents cheer on local artists performing original music at the B LIVE Music + Arts Festival, a youth-led pop-up concert at Dr. Green park in Brooklyn. The B LIVE program at Brownsville Community Justice Center offers workshops and internships to teach young people marketable skills and culminates with a youth-organized event to build community connections and give voice to positive stories.
The Red Hook Community Justice Center runs numerous youth programs. This summer, in collaboration with Progress Playbook, the Center helped 17 teenagers create and design a brand of clothing. They learned about starting a business and also used the brand to send a positive message to the community. Justina, Jamel, and Anais show off their t-shirts, which the young entrepreneurs sold at a neighborhood pop-up shop. They also got many purchasers to volunteer at least an hour of their time to help local non-profits. Photo credit: Lloyd Cambridge / Progress Playbook