Community Engagement

For over 52 years, CYC has ensured that young people in San Francisco find and feel support—and grow up in communities that are thriving, inclusive, and safe.

Our work today focuses on:

  • Supporting youth as active participants and leaders in the broader community by engaging them in local issues they determine are important, and broadening that engagement to include new groups, elders, families, and civic role models from across San Francisco

  • Providing youth facing cultural and language barriers with opportunities to help and learn from others, refine their skills, and both find and amplify their voice

  • Serving diverse and economically challenged neighborhoods with referrals, linkages, education, and events that foster connection, mutual trust, resilience, and safety

  • Responding to community trends and situations that require specialized, culturally/linguistically competent, and trauma-informed mediation and service

  • Continuing to nurture our historical roots in the AAPI community by servicing those community members directly, while expanding efforts to be intersectional and stand as strong allies

Civic Participation

These programs foster civic and community engagement through youth-led and youth-driven events and activities that enhance knowledge and increase awareness of community issues.

The AAPI Youth Leadership Council provides weekly workshops that encourage leadership development, social awareness, and civic engagement among AAPI youth.

With connection to the city Youth Commissioner, this program encourages connection to and understanding of city government by engaging District 7 youth leaders to propose legislation and policy affecting their district.

Now in its 17th year, this annual summit amplifies youth voices, leadership, and concerns. The theme for 2024 is "Unite to Ignite Change."

Community Outreach & Events

These programs provide underserved youth living in underserved neighborhoods with opportunities to effect positive change, ensuring that youth and communities are both well-supported.

The Coalition for Community Safety and Justice is a group of four Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) organizations formed to address the safety of the API community against violence, racism, and xenophobia. CYC is serving as the fiscal agency for the CCSJ and provides coordinated street outreach and crisis response services.

This program teaches and informs the public about the importance of disaster preparedness by providing free seismic, fire, and emergency outreach and education to youth, seniors, residents, businesses, merchants, and community-based organizations.

CYC youth across San Francisco teach monolingual seniors how to operate smartphones and tablet computers. These invaluable skills give seniors the mobility, access, and freedom to connect to the world beyond their community.

Youth for Community Engagement (YCE) promotes self-development, communication skills, and a positive attitude to help immigrant youth and elderly adapt to a new country. Youth learn the value of what it means to give back and build a community through volunteerism.

Bayview Service Connection and Multicultural Engagement (BSCME) promotes racial harmony amongst the African American, AAPI, and Latinx communities living in the Bayview through outreach, cultural events, assistance with connection to services and resources, and community-based events.

CYC is trusted by individual neighborhoods like Chinatown, the Richmond, Bayview, Ingleside, and by the city as a whole to host community-building events throughout the year. These events are vital to preserve culture and build community through cross-cultural and intergenerational sharing. You can join our general newsletter and neighborhood-specific newsletters below to stay in the loop.

Advocacy & Justice

For over 52 years, CYC has been a trusted supporter of the local AAPI community in San Francisco, known for our many programs that benefit the community throughout the city and in each neighborhood. As we’ve grown, the city has turned to CYC for our expertise building bridges across racially diverse communities in the Bayview, Tenderloin, Richmond, and elsewhere. Over time, and across the city, CYC has provided steady leadership in response to situations that require specialized, culturally/linguistically competent, and trauma-informed mediation.

As with all our programs, we tailor our multi-racial and cross-racial advocacy and justice work to each individual, while also working at a group level and supporting community-driven change. By respecting the uniqueness of each individual, group, and community, we build trust that leads to new growth and new possibilities.

This program provides skill development and leadership opportunities for youth in the Bayview committed to cultural vibrancy, youth inclusion, and racial harmony.

The Youth Justice Collective prepares high school -aged youth to become leaders of positive social change.

Young Asian Women Against Violence (YAWAV) is a 9-month program where youth learn about the root causes and impact of violence, and cultivate their leadership skills and voice.

― San Francisco Mayor London Breed

A shining example: the Richmond Community Hub

The new Richmond Community Hub, opening in 2023, exemplifies our programmatic approach and how CYC’s community engagement and advocacy efforts intertwine. Richmond is often seen as a stable, middle-income community. However, a substantial and growing number of Richmond youth and their families struggle daily with basic needs. Asian American and Pacific Islanders (AAPI) comprise 40% of the Richmond community, and 42% of them are considered low income or in poverty. Low-income members of the Richmond community face challenges to find affordable housing, make a livable wage, and obtain proper health care.

The Richmond Community Hub will:

  • Expand education and employment opportunities to young people, low-income adults, and older adults
  • Foster social connection through a mix of culturally and linguistically appropriate outreach, workshops, services, and community events
  • Enhance partnerships with local organizations
  • Support cultural pride and a family-centered approach

The Hub will revitalize this essential community, providing support and connection for decades to come.