Womankind’s Youth Empowerment Project: Community Needs Assessment for Sunset Park

Womankind’s Youth Empowerment Project: Sunset Park Community Needs Assessment

As we celebrate the innovative and transformative work of Womankind's Youth Empowerment Project (YEP), we are thrilled to share a landmark achievement by our 2022-2023 cohort. Our dedicated group of teenagers embarked on a journey of discovery, advocacy, and community engagement, culminating in the "Sunset Park Community Needs Assessment" report.

Introduction to YEP:
Womankind's Youth Empowerment Project is a social justice and leadership development group that aims to empower teens, ages 14-18, with the knowledge and awareness needed to break the cycles of violence in our community. The youth meet continuously for a year to engage in self-reflection, discussion, and a deeper understanding about the impact of systemic violence. Through conversations, group activities, and community projects, we equip participants with the tools they need to become leaders and change-makers in their communities.

About the Project:
YEP’s community activism project is led by the youth, offering them full autonomy in the project’s direction. Last year's YEP cohort explored the complex landscape of violence within Brooklyn's Sunset Park--where one of Womankind's community office is located--through a photography project. Their curiosity and commitment to making a difference led them to conduct a comprehensive community needs assessment. By designing a 15-question survey and interviewing 31 community members, these remarkable young individuals created a full photographic report, analyzing their findings and offering thoughtful recommendations. Their hope is these findings can be shared with leaders and local community-based organizations to make Sunset Park a safer place. 

Our Approach and Disclaimer:
This needs assessment was a youth-led initiative, guided by Womankind's staff, but driven by the YEP participants' questions, analysis, and conclusions. This project was a valuable learning experience for all involved, and we're excited to share their work with the broader community. Please note that the conclusions and themes drawn from the needs assessment may not fully reflect Womankind's stance on certain issues. We've included a disclaimer in the report to acknowledge this, underscoring our commitment to supporting the autonomous thought processes of our youth.

Womankind is proud to support and showcase the impactful work of our Youth Empowerment Project participants. Their dedication to understanding and addressing the needs of the Sunset Park community is a testament to the power of youth activism and the potential for meaningful change. For those interested in delving deeper into the findings and recommendations,we invite you to read the "Sunset Park Community Needs Assessment" report.