Resource Center

The BOOST Cafe Resource Center is a collection of FREE resources curated by BOOST and sorted by grade level and category.

Interested in adding a FREE resource? Email [email protected]




Civic Engagement –

   Advocacy/Policy, Research

Civic engagement involves “working to make a difference in the civic life of one’s community and developing the combination of knowledge, skills, values and motivation to make that difference. It means promoting the quality of life in a community, through both political and non-political processes.” Civic engagement includes both paid and unpaid forms of political activism, environmentalism, and community and national service. Volunteering, national service, and service-learning are all forms of civic engagement. According to the 2006 National Civic and Political Health Survey, seven percent of 15- to 25-year-old Americans participated in 10 or more community engagement or political activities within the previous year.3 When compared to their peers who report no civic engagement activities, this group was more likely to be African-American, urban, attend church regularly, from a family with parents who volunteer, a current student (in college or high school), and from college-educated home. AmeriCorps (formerly the Corporation for National and Community Service, or CNCS) is a federal agency that sends people power and funding to communities across the country for causes such as disaster response, the opioid crisis, and education. Participation in civic engagement activities can help youth become better informed about current events. For example, according to the 2006 National Civic and Political Health Survey, approximately a quarter of youth who had not participated in civic engagement activities within the last year did not answer any questions regarding current politics correctly. Click on the link to learn more.

Youth Power

   Community-Based, Service Learning and Volunteer Programs, Social Justice, Youth Development

We at YouthPower believe that young people are at the heart of solutions to the world’s greatest challenges. That’s why we’re dedicated to strengthening systems in communities to achieve sustainable outcomes in health, education, and political and economic empowerment. By helping young people pursue their aspirations, we empower them to contribute to, and benefit from, the creation of more peaceful and prosperous communities. Promoting positive youth development (PYD) YouthPower promotes a shared understanding of positive youth development (PYD) whereby young people are empowered to reach their full potential. PYD transitions away from problem-focused responses to youth crises, to proactively building skills, fostering healthy relationships, transforming systems, and making youth an active partner in development efforts. Advancing youth development YouthPower improves the ability of youth-led and youth-serving institutions to design, implement, and assess the programs and policies that impact young people. Using lessons from our own research and knowledge sharing, we support the scale-up of sustainable youth programs, within and across multiple sectors. We do this to equip young people to actively engage in the development of their communities. Creating a learning network YouthPower’s Learning Network connects youth-serving initiatives, community-based organizations, international donors, academics, and government entities engaged in improving the knowledge, skills, practices, and partnerships around positive youth development. Together we are united in our aim to support the transition of young people into healthy, productive adults. Providing evidence, evaluation, and technical guidance YouthPower conducts research, evaluates innovative youth programs, and disseminates information to expand the knowledge base on what does – and does not – work in youth development. By compiling and sharing resources that take an evidence-based approach, we provide practitioners and researchers with the necessary tools to continuously improve the effectiveness of youth development practices.

Builder’s Club

   Community Collaborations/Partnerships, Community Service Learning, Community-Based, Service Learning and Volunteer Programs, Social Justice, Youth Development

There are more than 1,500 Builders Clubs in middle schools around the world. No two are alike. Each club is an independent entity-designed for its members, by its members. They work together to improve their schools and their communities. Their service also increases the visibility and enhances the reputation of both the club and the school or organization they represent. The program is designed to fit member and volunteer interests. It’s student-led. Builders Club is uniquely built on an important principle: Amazing things happen when the students take the lead. It’s age-appropriate. The program and its resources are designed specifically to help middle school students get the most of of the club experience. Your needs matter. Each club determines its own meeting schedule, service projects and other activities in order to fit the needs of advisors, members and sponsors. You’re not alone. Adult Kiwanis volunteers and staff at the regional and international levels are there to support your club’s success.

Youth Uprising

   Advocacy/Policy, Social Justice, Youth Development

YU LEAD (Leadership Excellence and Development) is a one-year leadership program that prepares a team of YU members who have overcome significant challenges to become community leaders by turning their passion for community advocacy into a career. By combining intensive leadership trainings and community enhancing group projects, YU LEAD prepares youth to be change agents, while ensuring that they are fully prepared for college or full-time work. YU LEAD represents the youth perspectives in program development and facilitation, opportunities to organize youth events, and community engagement strategies. Participants also receive extensive training to carry the voice of youth in public policy and planning processes.

UNICEF Office of Global & Policy

   Advocacy/Policy, Research

Digital civic engagement by young people Rapid analysis | An overview of the latest research with a critical focus on the enablers, constraints and nature of youth civic engagement in the digital space. This analysis presents an overview of relevant research across the topic of digital civic engagement by young people by asking about the nature and dimensions of engagement, enablers and constraints of digital civic engagement, as well examining some key considerations when supporting young people’s engagement.

The Educational Fund to Stop Gun Violence

   Advocacy & Policy, Advocacy/Policy, Community-Based, Prevention & Intervention, Research, Social Justice

The Educational Fund to Stop Gun Violence (Ed Fund) is a 501(c)(3) affiliate organization of the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence. We use a public health and equity lens to identify and implement evidence-based policy solutions and programs to reduce gun violence in all its forms. We seek to make gun violence rare and abnormal. The Ed Fund makes communities safer by translating research into policy. We achieve this by engaging in policy development, advocacy, community and stakeholder engagement, and technical assistance.

The Coalition to Stop Gun Violence

   Advocacy & Policy, Advocacy/Policy, Community-Based, Mental Health, Prevention & Intervention, Research, Safety, Social Justice

The Coalition to Stop Gun Violence develops and advocates for evidence-based solutions to reduce gun injury and death in all its forms. CSGV’s guiding principle is simple: We believe gun violence should be rare and abnormal. We pursue this goal through policy development, advocacy, community engagement, and effective training.

Brady Campaign

   Advocacy & Policy, Advocacy/Policy, Community Collaborations/Partnerships, Community-Based, Mental Health, Prevention & Intervention, Safety, Social Justice, Youth Justice and Reform

In getting the bipartisan Brady Law passed in 1993, Jim and Sarah Brady accomplished the inconceivable. But there’s more work to be done — and only when we work together will we solve this problem. In order to do that work, we must accept these three truths about America’s gun violence epidemic: 1) Gun ownership demands responsibility; 2) Those empowered to do so must uphold existing gun laws; and 3) Gun violence is a uniquely American problem that impacts all races and ethnicities in the country, but nonetheless exacts a particular toll on Black and Brown communities.

Sandy Hook Promise

   Advocacy & Policy, Advocacy/Policy, Community-Based, Gangs and Violence, Mental Health, Social Justice, Youth Justice and Reform

Sandy Hook Promise is a national nonprofit organization founded and led by several family members whose loved ones were killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School on December 14, 2012. Based in Newtown, Connecticut, our intent is to honor all victims of gun violence by turning our tragedy into a moment of transformation. By empowering youth to “know the signs” and uniting all people who value the protection of children, we can take meaningful actions in schools, homes, and communities to prevent gun violence and stop the tragic loss of life.


   Advocacy/Policy, Community-Based, Juvenile Justice and Reform, Mental Health, Social Justice, Trauma-Informed Care, Youth Justice and Reform

Giffords is a leader in the movement to end gun violence in America. Led by former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, our team brings decades of political, legal, and policy expertise to the fight for gun safety. Our efforts shift culture, mobilize voters, and challenge injustice. Nearly 40,000 people die from gun violence in the US every year. This uniquely American crisis leaves no community untouched—but it doesn’t have to be this way. From universal background checks to community-based violence intervention strategies, we know that there are proven solutions that will make our country safer. In statehouses and courthouses across America, we’re taking on the gun lobby and winning. Since the tragedy at Sandy Hook in December 2012, we’ve helped pass more than 350 gun safety laws in 45 states. Gun violence is a complex problem, and ending this epidemic will require a wide range of solutions. We’re committed to seeing this fight through, until the promise of a safe and just country is a reality for every person and community in America.