What is YW Boston’s F.Y.R.E. Initiative?

F.Y.R.E.: Fierce Youth Reigniting Excellence

In this new program launched in the Fall of 2019, YW Boston facilitators conduct a 12 to 15-week leadership development series for girls grades 6th through 9th. The series brings together social justice education, positive identity development, and civic engagement, culminating in small group civics projects. This model will take place in schools or Out of School Time programs, and it is developed to operate in a “girls group” structure rather than a traditional classroom structure. Core to the program is an effort to provide experiential learning opportunities and dialogue to build understanding and increase social emotional learning. F.Y.R.E. Initiative is a fee-based program.


Program participants will present a project at an end-of-semester conference and have the opportunity to engage with other youth leaders from across Greater Boston. Participants will be supported by and influence YW Boston’s Advocacy Committee through a feedback loop.

Two young F.Y.R.E. Initiative participants smiling

Program Objectives

• Participants will utilize critical thinking to assess racial and gender inequities in the City of Boston

• Participants will learn about historical and current movements for racial and gender equity

• Participants will increase their capacity to engage in advocacy and policy change and lead others to act on issues important to them

• Participants will build a sense of self, empowerment, and resilience through controlling their lives and making an impact in their community

• Participants will identify community needs and assets and build problem-solving skills in identifying solutions

• Participants will understand how identities intersect and are impacted by systems of power

• Participants will utilize reflection, empathy, and conflict resolution to work across differences to resolve broader institutional issues

Sample Curriculum Outline

Section 1: Learn

Week 1: Introduction & Norms

Week 2: Identity: Race & Gender Intersectionality

Week 3: Personal Power: Self Esteem & Self Advocacy

Weeks 4-5: Systems: Unpacking Racism & Sexism

Week 6: Healthy Relationships

Week 7: Collective Power

Section 2: Plan

Week 8: Community Assessment

Week 9: Selecting an Issue

Week 10: Researching Issue | Conduct Power Analysis

Section 3: Act

Week 11: Identifying Tactics | Project Development

Weeks 12-13: Act

Week 14: Conference preparation

Week 15: Reflection

YW Boston Gender Inclusion Statement: