Mission: The mission of CrossingBarriers is to develop the leadership skills of students, youth of color and immigrant students and community members to improve education, address community based issues and be agents for change.
Results: Each year as a small grassroots non-profit CB has great impact in education organizing, training young people to be community organizers and become advocates in their schools and neighborhoods. Each year through our workshops and presentations, CB reaches out to over 457 youth, parents, community members, teachers and administrators. Each year CB trains high school students from two to tree sites in community organizing and leadership development to improve the status of education and services in schools they struggle to succeed daily. Past projects include Immigrant Education Rights Project, St. Paul Education Project, Eden Prairie Education Project, Coalition to Close the Achievement Gap in Eden Prairie and organizing immigrant parents in charter schools to be advocates for their children that were facing low quality of education. High school students as Project Leaders designed youth training workshops to empower students as community leaders in their neighborhood schools, community and become comfortable organizing to improve quality of education in their schools. The impact created in the last seven years is building youth voice and parents that were marginalized in public schools and neighborhoods. CB continues to build that voice and trains young people to address failing schools and community issues that impact their peers. CB had great impact through building the voice of the marginalized in the school system through advocacy, legal action and organizing. The main purpose now is to train young people not to be afraid to advocate, organize in schools and services that are failing them.
Target demographics: young people from low-income communities struggling in the school system to learn to organize and increase their leadership skills to advocate in their schools and neighborhood.
Direct beneficiaries per year: We trained 52 high school students over the age of 16 and 35 immigrant parents on advocacy skills to address barriers in thier schools.
Geographic areas served: Minneapolis, St. Paul and metro area
Programs: Youth Leadership and Community Organizing Training for high schools students in Phillips Community Center
I have worked with Crossing Barriers on the issue of the achievement gap in our community. CB works very collaboratively to identify and then begin to address the obstacles for students. They are also very persistent in achieving their goal. If resistance is found in implementing the plan, they are able to seek difference solutions always with the goal in mind.
I volunteered for Crossing Barriers teaching a class to high school aged kids about leadership and community involvement at a community center/park. Crossing Barriers gave me an opportunity to get involved in my community that I otherwise would not have had. I learned a lot about how to effectively work with youth and the problems that youth encounter in their day-to-day lives during my time teaching the class.
I have been too many programs but Crossing Barriers had the most impact on me. It really made me feel a leader and see things in many different ways. I have gained so much knowledge through this program such as speaking in public, speaking out my voice, most importantly outreaching students in need. We engage students face to face; our goal is to make difference in our community, schools and much more. I am very happy that I was involved. The Wonderful thing about this program is that they train you to become a leader, and the make you do the work with the students. The mission of CB is to develop the leadership skills of youth and community member to improve education. So lets all please support and encourage them by given what you got, money, skills and knowledge.
I am Student Leader At CrossingBarriers (CB). The reason I am involve with CB for 3 years is because i have never been a program like CB where they train the students to be the leaders in their community and work on any issues you want and actually see some result. I am usually use to sitting in a program while the elders preach the whole time. At CB I got to work on Bullying project that most Students in St. Paul school are facing today and they gave me a chance to lead the Youth Leadership Workshop. CB is one of great small Program that makes differences in youth life.