At-Risk Harlem Youth to Serve as Change Agents in Harlem's Business Commmunity: An Exercise in Translation Science

At-Risk Harlem Youth to Serve as Change Agents in Harlem's Business Commmunity: An Exercise in Translation Science

United States
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

In order to address the issue of displaced African American males (15-21), PIMUSA will recruit at-risk youth to serve as changes agents in the community.

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Plot your innovation within the mosaic of solutions
Which of these barriers is the primary focus of your work?

Market failures and shakeups displace young men’s opportunities

Which of the principles is the primary focus of your work?

Unleash creativity that channels experiences of risk and vulnerability toward leadership

If you believe some other barrier or principle should be included in the mosaic, please describe it and how it would affect the positioning of your initiative in the mosaic:


Describe your program or new idea in one sentence.

In order to address the issue of displaced African American males (15-21), PIMUSA will recruit at-risk youth to serve as changes agents in the community.

What makes your initiative uniquely positioned to create change in your community?

Project Translation Science is unique, due to the stakeholders involved in the engagement. According to the New York City Department of Juvenile Justice, there were a total of 318 cases admitted. Of the 318 cases, 250 or 80% were African American. Moreover, 80% of all cases for all boroughs were male. PIMUSA plans to recruit 10 high school students who have been identified by the New York City Board of Education as at-risk youth. Students will immediately benefit from PIMUSA's culture, which combines a hierarchial structure married with the entrepreneural spirit. Students will also benefit from a unique classroom experience, that will provide them with introductory business knowledge.

African American businesses are also confronted with unique challenges, as the business and political climate remains fluid. A number of businesses in Community Boards 9, 10 and 11 have closed. In addition, anectdotal evidence appears to suggest that African American businesses lack internal controls that monitor quality. This project plans to address this challenge, with at-risk youth.

Describe how you organize and carry out your work?

PIMUSA has already recruited 20 small businesses for this engagement. The recruitment plan will intensify during 2008. With the expectation of increasing participant (Harlem business) enrollment by 75% to 200 total participants from Commmunity Boards 9, 10 and 11. The strategy of recruiting high school students and/or individual cases from New York City Juvenille Court is currently under review by the New York City Office of the Mayor and other designated parties.

What is your plan to scale and expand your innovation into your community and beyond?

Self-Assessment and Continuous Improvement Plan
PIMUSA mitigates foreseen and unforeseen circumstances with the following procedures
A developed series of analysis
Utilization of objectives-based risk identification
Utilization of source and problem analysis
Validating scope requirements of stakeholder
Managing stakeholder communication plan
Providing timelines and project related reports with established baseline
Establish constraints and devise "Workarounds"

PIMUSA Equal Employment Opportunity Policy PIMUSA complies with Title VII of the Civil Rights Ace of 1964. Age Discrimination in Employment ACT of 1967. Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990. Equal Pay Act of 1963. PIMUSA also complies with New York State and local laws pertaining Equal Employment Opportunity.

What other resources, institutional, or policy needs would be necessary to help sustain and scale up your idea?

Significant collaboration is under-way with the New York City Office of the Mayor, New York City Chancellor's Office, Upper Manhattan Empowerment Zone and New York City Juvenile Courts; to ensure that the mission statement of this project converges with the needs of their respective clients. This will be accomplished with four proposed meetings during the next five months.

Describe your impact in one sentence, commenting on both the individual and community levels.

The potential impact of creating synergy among disenfranchised youth with disenfranchised businesses in Harlem, can only yield a unique outcome.

What impact has your work achieved to date?

PIMUSA is a social enterprise with mission-driven projects that possess unique elements and aims. The qualitative and quantitative indicators in this project, lead us to believe that the impact to date, can be attributed to the response rate (18%) of Harlem businesses willing to participate. Whereby, the response rate for recruitment has not begun, however, the buzz generated at the local level may considered as an interesting milestone.

Number of individuals served

PIMUSA will recruit 10 to 15 at-risk high school students from Community Boards 9, 10 and 11. In addition, PIMUSA has already recruited 20 Harlem businesses. With plans to increase participant recruitment by 200 in a six-month time frame.

Community impact

The impact on communities in Boards 9, 10 and 11 will be immediate, due to the nature of the project. Members of the respective community will also be recruited for the roles of volunteer and client. As a result, respective stakeholders will have an opportunity to engage in the project. PIMUSA believes that this proposed project can be replicated. Plans for future replication will comprise abstract, academic and trade journal publications, to give project exposure. We also believe the scope of this program is original and may bring increased exposure to the Community Boards of 9, 10 and 11. At the end of each PIMUSA quarter (4 quarters total). 10 item client satisfaction surveys will be administered by an independent party. The independent party will be responsible for tracking client outputs and outcomes-while providing independent reports to PIMUSA. PIMUSA will provide targets for the clients and the staff at PIMUSA. The results will bolster the internal continous quality improvement program at PIMUSA.

Society at large

According to the New York City Department Juvenile Courts, 82% of males compared with 18% female were admitted to secure or non-secure detention. In addition, the age of admission for 15 year olds was 43% for all boroughs. Of the 43%, it has been estimated that 28% were Afrrican American males. This trend is alarming. PIMUSA's vision of Project Translation Science is to increase awareness of the troubling trend in New York City, while providing opportunities to those at risk.

What measure do you use to gauge your impact and why?

# of At-risk youth is 11.38MSY
# of days per week are 3
# of hour per day are 4.0

Gathering of evaluation data will be accomplished by soliciting feedback from clients, PIMUSA staff and volunteers. The following qualitative data will be considered: # hours volunteered # of paid staff working with volunteers and to what extent # of clients served, rate of volunteer and staff turnover Amount of training received by paid staff and volunteers # of $ spent or saved as an outcome of volunteer services among other indicators

Result Statement-Statement of results will be issued for all participating MSY's ad clients who completed their respective voluteer or client agreements during the project's lifecycle. The Statement of Results is a collective of record which will be issued at the end of the project's lifecycle. The Statement of Results will record descriptive data of client sites. Evaluation data of MSY during project lifecycle.

How is your initiative currently being financed and how would you finance further expansion and/or replication?

PIMUSA operating budget will cover 55% or $38,535 of the costs related to this project. PIMUSA has submitted a funding request $31,158 or 45%. 100% or $69,693 represents total budget cost during the first two years. Moreover, PIMUSA the teaching modules that will be utilized for instrution and program modules for businesses can be replicated.

Provide information on your current finances and organization:

Operating Budget for Project Translation Science is $35,535

Key Line Expense Items

$75,000 FTE @30% devoted to program. $22,500
11.88MSY (high school staff)@$3,244
11.88MSYXFICA @ 7.65%. $400.00
11.88MSYXADD Insurance Coverage $104.85. $1,246.00
Recognition Cost for MSY:15 Crystal trophies@$29.95 . $443.00

Consultant Collaborating Institutions
Veterans Association, Small Business Adminstration, General Services Administration, Ernst & Young Alumni Association, New York Medical College Alumni Association and NYU School of Medicine.

Who are your potential partners and allies?

Existing partners are Americorps and New York City Department of Corrections. Potential partners comprise, New York City High Schools in Community Boards 9, 10 and 11. Allies comprise, Upper Manhattan Empowerment Zone and New York City Department of Planning.

Who are your potential investors?

Potential investors within the context of this project will be defined as institutions who may have a stakeholder interest (due to their cient population) in providing financing, equipment or human capital
comprise: New York State Board of Education, New York City Board of Education and Bloomberg Corporation.

The Story
What is the origin of this innovation? Tell us your story.

Small businesses in the U.S. are often plagued with many challenges. A number of small businesses lack the wherewithal to interpret state and federal regulations, keeping up with technology, distribution channels, and economic uncertainty. There are 129,329 Black-owned businesses in New York. It is also estimated that there may be 10,000 or more Black small business owners in Community Boards 9 (West Harlem), 10 (Central Harlem) and 11 (East Harlem). In the wake of the "Harlem Renaissance" or "Harlem's Gentrification" depending on who you ask: The number of Black-owned business collectively in Harlem have dramatically decreased over the past ten years. This decrease may be attributed to escalating leases, changing demographics, zoning, and "Harlem's Gentrification."

Ten African-American male high school students aged from 16-20 who have been identified by the New York City Board of Education or New York City Department of Corrections as "at -risk" will be recruited for this project. Those selected will acquire training in MS Office and quality improvement over the course of 18 weeks at 9 hours per week.

Considering innovation can be considered as a major driver in the economy; introducing quality improvement services grounded in Six Sigma methods to Black-owned small businesses with "at-risk" students serving as primary stakeholders in Central Harlem is a radical concept. PIMUSA plans to offer black-owned businesses in Central Harlem with the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) of 44-45, 62 and 81 a consortium of consulting services.

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