Building Circles of Care That Transform Communities, One Young Person At A Time
About Us
Since 2000, St. Stephen’s Youth Programs has been providing young people from some of Boston's most disadvantaged communities with year-round, out-of-school time academic enrichment. We offer after-school and summer programming at churches in the South End and Lower Roxbury. We also run stand-alone summer programming at four church-hosted sites in Dorchester, Mattapan, and Chelsea. 

Throughout the year, our programs offer teens quality employment as tutors and mentors for younger students. In total we serve about 800 young people in grades K-12 each year. Watcha video about what SSYP means to teens. |Left: staff of B-SAFE 2014|
Service Bowl 2015
On March 21st, St. Stephen's Youth Programs was honored to host the third annual day of service to celebrate the winners (and losers) of the Superbowl. This year Mayors Walsh and Murray were joined by Bill Basl Director of AmeriCorps, part of the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS). CNCS is a federal agency that helps more than 5 million Americans improve the lives of their fellow citizens through service. They work with our local partners including AmeriCorps, Generations Incorporated, Massachusetts Service Alliance, and The Massachusetts Promise Fellowship Program. Mr. Basl enjoyed meeting interns serving at St. Stephen's this year through AmeriCorps VISTA and Mass Promise Fellowships, including Jeremy Kazanjian-Amory and Brittany Marcum.

The Mayors and their staff members arrived ready to work and pitched in to help repaint our art/teen room. Other volunteers did projects at the Blackstone Innovation School across the street from SSYP, the South End Branch of the Boston Public Library, and around the neighborhood where retreating snow has left the streets and sidewalks needing a lot of cleanup. 

During the closing ceremony, three of our teens eloquently spoke about what being part of the St. Stephen's Youth Programs family has meant to them. The mayors complimented each other's commitment to mobilizing community service efforts focused on ending poverty, unequal access to education, and racism. Also offering thanks to all involved were The Right Reverend Alan Gates, Bishop of Massachusetts and Danielle Morrissey, Principal at the Blackstone Innovation School. See coverage here.

Youth Jobs Rally
The Youth Jobs Coalition hosted the 6th annual Youth Jobs Rally on February 18th. Young people and adult allies from across the state marched from Old South Church to the State House to advocate for an increase to the statewide youth jobs budget. St. Stephens' community organizers brought over 25 people to the rally.

Researchers at Northeastern's Center For Labor Market Studies have found that providing teens with quality employment opportunities reduces their participation in violent activities, and greatly improves their educational and employment outcomes. Check out this website for 
more research on the positive impact of summer jobs! 

EBSCO System Unveiled
On Wednesday December 10th, partners and staff of the Blackstone Innovation School celebrated a virtual ribbon-cutting at the unveiling of EBSCO, one of the most sophisticated academic databases in the nation.  Blackstone students, faculty and administrators now have access to this incredible resource which provides millions of documents, articles and tools that are geared for students from kindergarten through eighth grade. Blackstone Principal Danielle Morrissey and other Blackstone staff spoke about the value of this tool as the school prepares students to be civic leaders and life-long learners. This gift of a permanent subscription to EBSCO was made possible thanks to the school's flourishing partnership with St. Stephen's

One of St. Stephen's key contributions to the school was the transformation of a dusty, poorly lit storage space with out-of-date books and encyclopedias into a state-of-the-art library. After more than a decade without a functional library, the Blackstone now has one of the best libraries in any BPS elementary school. The library has a collection of 10,000+ relevant books and an online and searchable catalog that allows teachers to use the library for lesson planning. A dedicated team of volunteers welcome students five days a week for read-alouds and book loaning to students. For many of the students, this is their first experience being able to take out books. New volumes and resources are added to the
library on a regular basis, thanks to the generosity of this team who come from Parish of the Epiphany in Winchester, Friends of the Blackstone, and the Simmons Graduate School of Library Science.

While great progress has been made to the school's library, there was still room for improvement, especially in its nonfiction collection. Now, thanks to EBSCO Information Services, students and teachers have access to a millions of reliable academic journals, magazines and other nonfiction resources at the click of a button. The database also will enhance the resources available to teachers, allowing them to find specific materials to supplement lesson plans and project assignments. The Blackstone's EBSCO package is specially designed with student-friendly search engines to teach young scholars how to navigate the online world of information with success and integrity.  With this new resource, Blackstone teachers have a new and 

Climate Change: Teens Demand Action
On September 21st, 400,000 people took to the streets of New York City to call for action on climate change. Among them, were teen Community Organizers from St. Stephen's Youth Programs. It was the largest action on climate change to date |photos|. The Rev. Tim Crellin our Executive Director praised the teens' positive attitude: "I am so proud of our team -- the teens were amazing. It was a long day but we were part of something really important

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Advisory Board

Johanna Acevedo   
Curtis Almquist
Jay Borden
Luke Burns
Candice Caines
Chris Cato
Walker Coppedge
Timothy Crellin 
Lee Englert
Diane Gipson 
John Kania
Constance Liu
Kate Malin
Stuart Mathews
Michael Melendez
Jim Napier
Mildred Plaza
Cam Roberts
Kathy Ruiz
Jane Tierney
Betsy Walsh
Chris Wilmerding
Amy Whitcomb Slemmer 
Shawna Young 

Did You Know?
We evaluate our students’ numeracy and literacy skills twice per year and use industry-accepted approaches for conducting comprehensive program evaluations. |Read our most recent report|.

Our students are less likely to be held back and more likely to
graduate from high school than Boston Public School peers who do not attend our programming.

Last year our second graders' numeracy scores improved 145% over the course of the school year. 

In 2014, 100% of our seniors graduated from high school (79% did so with a well-formulated plan for their post-graduation year).