In May, we HONOR, CELEBRATE, and Embrace MPDC’s Youth Development Program!

In continuation of MPDC’s 55th Anniversary, we are celebrating MPDC’s Youth Development Program all month long! Over the years, MPDC has built strong relationships with our residents of all ages — especially our youth. Through all of our programs and events, we have made sure to prioritize the lives and futures of the next generation. Here’s a sneak peek of what we’ll be highlighting this month:

Honoring Our Past Youth!

MPDC was a member of the Youth Jobs Coalition in 2012/2013. Here’s a #throwback to 2012 when MPDC youth were conducting State budget advocacy (also known as Massachusetts Association of CDCs (MACDC) Lobby Day!). These future leaders were advocating for access to job opportunities for ages youth 18-24.


A Walk Down Memory Lane: The History of MPDC’s Youth Development Program

MPDC Resource Development Manager, Kay Mathew, recently sat down with Angela Kelly. She was with the program from 2009 through 2015. (7 summers) to reminisce about the history of MPDC’s Youth Development Program.
A favorite project of hers: Young people worked with the Center for Community Health Education Research and Service (Center for Community Health Education Research and Service) with the Boston Public Health Commission funded “Bodega and Grocery Store Assessment” which provided high-level training to our young people around public health research and data analysis.
This project included a survey of bodegas and grocery stores regarding access to healthy food – quality, affordability, and placement of products in the stores. They gave a presentation alongside CCHERS at the Madison Park Village community room. This was shortly before Tropical Foods opened and was a nice segue for the young people to see MPDC playing a role in the establishment of a supermarket in the neighborhood.

Let’s Talk About It: MPDC’s F.L.Y. Program

On April 23rd, Front Line Youth (F.L.Y.) hosted its third installment of the youth-led trauma support forum, No Trauma, No Drama. The event was designed, planned, and executed by a team of youth ages 14 through 20. The evening included youth performers, a live panel with mental health professionals, discussion breakout rooms moderated by youth, and a presentation of support resources from around the city.
“We need spaces like this – where I can be myself and share all my experiences in a format that is with my family at T.E. and other teens that have experienced trauma” – Kennedy Rhone, 17, Mattapan.
Joined by over 75 attendees, the event highlighted the importance of community trauma supports and how to address the lasting effects of trauma through creative outlets. Youth poets Kayla Simpson and Jael Nunez delivered powerful conscious poems about their experiences while Emcees; ExoShakeem, and Seefour; were compelling with their dynamic performances. Event presenters Khalia Hamilton and Amani Gregory kept the crowd engaged with their poised, skillful public speaking.
Front Line Youth (F.L.Y.) is a team of dynamic and insightful youth from MPDC’s Youth Programs and Teen Empowerment formed in 2018 through a grant supported by Boston Children’s Hospital.

The Center for Teen Empowerment presents the 29th annual PEACE CONFERENCE!

May 26th – 27th The Center for Teen Empowerment PEACE CONFERENCE!
The Center for Teen Empowerment, Inc. is excited to present our 29th Annual Youth Peace Conference called SENSELESS Smoke. This year’s Peace Conference is a two-day conference kicking off our summer 2021 campaign, “Promoting Peace Through the Power of the People”.

Youth Development Program Spotlight: MPDC’s MT2T Program

We HONOR COMMUNITY through interdepartmental collaboration with MPDC youth. Check out this awesome video created by MPDC Youth Tatianna highlighting the MT2T Program.


Celebrating Steven Turner, an MPDC Scholarship Recipient!

Today we HONOR Community by featuring Steven Turner, an MPDC Scholarship recipient.
Steven Turner is a life-long MPDC resident, living in Orchard Gardens, born and raised. Steven was one of the brilliant recipients of the MPDC Smith Scholarship back in 2017 and just graduated from UMASS Amherst with a bachelor’s degree in Journalism and Communications. During his time at UMASS Amherst, he served as an event planner/organizer, a radio host, and as an editor-in-chief for the institution’s publication — a title that he still holds today. He has also mentored and served as a program leader for two local Boys & Girls Clubs. His hobbies are blogging and writing about music and entertainment. In the future, Steven hopes to be a broadcast journalist.
It’s not too late to apply for MPDC’s 2021 Scholarship Program!
Learn more here:…/deadline-for-mpdc…/

Embracing Naesoj Ware, an MPDC Youth Workforce Development Participant!

Naesoj Ware is a brilliant 17-year-old teen from Mattapan. She’s been involved with Madison Park Development Corporation’s Youth Workforce Dept. since visiting an open house orientation at the age of 13. Whilst she was not of age yet for a paid internship, she remained in contact with the staff until she turned 14. At that age, her first paid internship employment opportunity was through MPDC working as a youth camp counselor for Arc of Cherubs Day Camp in Roxbury. During her next year, she took a leave to attend an internship working within the court system. At 16, Naesoj reunited with the MPDC family, where she interned at Soleil Restaurant then at Councilor At- Large, Julia Mejia’s office. There, she rose up the ranks and was hired directly through the office as a Youth Liaison. Shortly after, she was hired as an associate program coordinator for Teen Empowerment. All of this before turning 17! Now 17, with a car and a career in tow, her aspiration to become a criminal law attorney is just around the corner. Her dream schools to attend are She is still the Youth Liaison for Councilor Mejia’s Office and is also part-time manager of Starbucks, while finishing her junior year at the O’bryant School of Science and Mathematics.
“Naesoj’s maturity and poise are well beyond her years and her dedication to social justice is unmatched. MPDC was honored to have her as a youth leader and we would like to wish her the best in all her endeavors!”
— Yhinny Matos

Embracing Promise with MPDC Youth Workforce Development Participant & aspiring YoutTube star, Luis Dacosta!

Lastly, in the month of May, we are EMBRACING Promise by featuring Luis DaCosta, an MPDC Youth Workforce Development Participant & aspiring YoutTube star. Check out his Youtube video below and subscribe to his channel!