Youth for Healthy Schools

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Our Mission

To ensure that young people of color are included at the decision-making table and heard in the conversation locally and nationally on health and wellness issues in our schools and communities.

Meet the Team

Eight Healthy Communities Fellows support their groups’ local work and connect it to state and national strategies for change including community education and engagement and policy development and implementation.



Community Food Advocates

Kristina Erskine is currently a Junior at Medgar Evers College studying Environmental Science. As the Youth Organizer for Community Food Advocates, she attempts to grow the world she wants to see exist with other young people. Kristina is constantly busy creating and conducting workshops, engaging in political activity, and uplifting young people around food justice issues.

Community Food Advocates


FEEST Seattle

Thuy-Mai Nguyen is has been a Youth Program Manager at FEEST (Food Empowerment Education Sustainability Team) since 2015. She works in the realm of youth development, arts and creativity, improv cooking and youth-led neighborhood-based health campaigns. At this time, Thuy-Mai is #blessed to have the opportunity to collaborate with FEEST youth leaders and develop an imaginative and joy-filled school food campaign.

FEEST Seattle


InnerCity Struggle

Estefany Garcia is a youth organizer for InnerCity Struggle and is a first generation college graduate of the University of California, Los Angeles. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Chicana/o Studies and a minor in urban planning. Raised in El Sereno, she has been active in her community for more than 8 years, starting off as a youth leader. On her spare time, Estefany plays son jarocho music, where as a community they create political verses on community conditions to inform and uplift each other.

InnerCity Struggle


Padres y Jóvenes Unidos

Cinthia Suasti, 19 years old, likes to read in her free time, and also likes to cook and try new recipes. Cinthia is excited to begin working as a Health Justice youth organizer and continue making change.

Padres Unidos


RYSE Center

Brian is currently the Community Health Program Manager at the RYSE Center in Richmond, CA. His work includes coordinating RYSE's health and wellness programs. Brian has also supported various radical inquiry work including RYSE's Listening Campaign: an inquiry of the experiences of trauma, violence, coping, and healing for young people of color in Richmond. He is now co-leading RYSE's Listening to Heal Campaign; a platform for policy and systems change to create and sustain healthy school climates. Brian studied Southeast Asian Studies and Education at UC Berkeley.

RYSE Center


SouthWest Organizing Project

Amanda Milagro Gallegos, was born and raised in the North valley of Albuquerque, New Mexico. She has been a community organizer for 7 years, working on youth and food justice issues. Amanda plans to pursue Chicanx Studies and is currently a student at Central New Mexico Community College.

Southwest Organizing Project


Youth Empowered Solutions (YES!)

Erica Marshall is a Charlotte native who has been advocating for comprehensive health education since she was a high school student. She served as an intern and peer educator at Planned Parenthood, Advocates for Youth, and most recently as a facilitator for the Collegiate Health Improvement Project at Johnson C. Smith University. After earning her degree in the field of communications from Howard University, she felt more inspired than ever to find a way for marginalized communities to be represented in the media and in local and state-level policies. Now as a part of the Youth Empowered Solutions (YES!) team, she is an ally for youth empowerment and an advocate for a healthier Charlotte.



Youth United for Change

Nick Ospa graduated college with a Bachelor’s Degree in Latin American Studies in 2007. This was a politicizing experience and was the beginning of a life trajectory committed to social justice. He has been a Social Justice Educator for several years prior to organizing. In 2016 he became the City Wide Organizer for Youth United for Change as a Healthy Communities Fellow. He has been engaged in movements focusing on anti-racism, mass incarceration, education justice, and health justice among others.

Youth United for Change

YFHS on Twitter


RT @THE_FCYO: Calling All Funders! FCYO has a new fund-Youth for Safety & Justice Fund. Join us in supporting a youth-led movement that cut…

by Youth4HealthySchools


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Our Partners

To ensure young people from across the country are included, six partner organizations lend their strengths and take part in technical assistance and training opportunities to build the power of youth voice.

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    Little Village Environmental
    Justice Organization (LVEJO)

    Chicago, IL

  • FRESH New London

    FRESH New London

    New London, CT

  • SW workers union

    Southwest Workers' Union

    San Antonio, TX

  • Baltimore-Algebra-Project

    Baltimore Algebra Project

    Baltimore, MD

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    Providence Student Union

    Providence, RI

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    Grow Hartford

    Hartford, CT

Contact Us

Mónica Córdova

Program Director
Funders Collaborative on Youth Organizing

Nijmie Dzurinko

Healthy Communities III Coach
Healthy Communities III Initiative

Office hours

Mon - Fri 9am - 6pm
(212) 725-3386