According to Michael Bloomberg, "Even though skin color in America no longer determines a child's fate, sadly it tells us far more about a child’s future than it should." Across all five boroughs, black and Latino young men suffer from a poverty rate that’s at least 50% higher than that of white and asian men. Not only are these men less likely to graduate and more likely to become teen fathers, they make up more than 90% of murder victims and perpetrators.
With a mission to change the face of modern philanthropy, Bloomberg Philanthropies encompasses the NYC Mayor's family foundation, personal giving, and charitable activities. (See Bloomberg Philanthropies: Grants for New York City). Bloomberg partnered up with the NYC Center for Economic Opportunity and Open Society Foundations in August 2011 to create the Young Men's Initiative, which is the nation's most comprehensive effort to eliminate race disparities in the black and Latino youth communities. To date, over $127 million has been dedicated to black and Latino-focused education, justice system, employment, and health organizations as part of the Young Men's Initiative.
Bloomberg's Education Program focuses on mentoring, literacy, discipline and education. The Employment Program offers internships and training opportunities, and the Health Program offers sex education and fatherhood training. (See Grants for K-12 Education). Bloomberg's expansive Justice Program focuses on behavioral therapy, intervention services, and legal counseling. To track the success of the Young Men's Initiative program, organization leaders assemble accountability and progress reports each month so that necessary adjustments can be made to individual programs.
The Young Men's Initiative is part of Bloomberg Philanthropies' Government Innovation Initiative. This Initiative also includes Cities of Service, which promotes volunteerism, and Financial Empowerment Centers, which help households get out of debt. Also part of Bloomberg's Government Innovation program, the Mayors Challenge competition aims to inspire American cities to generate ideas and solve major challenges to improve urban life.
Although Bloomberg claims to always be open to new ideas, they won't accept your unsolicited grant proposal. Grant applications are accepted by invitation only. If your nonprofit organization is working to improve government innovation programs similar to the ones listed above, you'll need to contact Bloomberg through their online Contact Us form.