Social Innovators

The Social Innovation Forum's portfolio of nonprofit Social Innovators and social impact business Impact Entrepreneurs represents a range of social issues including food insecurity, healthy aging, environmental sustainability, youth development, and the arts. Explore our portfolio by year or social issue and read Innovator and Entrepreneur Spotlights to learn what it means to be a part of the Social Innovation Forum.

Learn more about our 2021 Social Innovator cohort here

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  • Safe City Academy

    A program of Dorchester Youth Collaborative
    • 2013 Social Innovator
    • Social Issue:
      Workforce Development
      Youth Development
      Education & College Access

    Safe City Academy (SCA) enrolls gang and court involved youth, ages 16 to 19, in a GED  preparation/work program. SCA serves approximately 50 high-risk, disconnected youth each year. Dorchester Youth Academy (DYC) launched Safe City Academy to address the lack of remedial education and GED programs for youth who have criminal records and have dropped out of public schools.

  • Science Club for Girls

    • 2012 Social Innovator
    • Social Issue:
      Women & Girls
      Youth Development
      Science, Technology, Engineering & Math (STEM)
      Education & College Access

    Science Club for Girls' (SCFG) mission is to foster excitement, confidence, and literacy in STEM for girls, particularly from underrepresented communities, by providing free, experiential programs and by maximizing meaningful interactions with women mentors in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

  • Shelter Music Boston

    • 2013 Social Innovator
    • Social Issue:
      Arts
      Housing & Homelessness
      Mental Health

    Shelter Music Boston presents classical chamber music concerts of the highest artistic standards in homeless shelters and other sheltering environments. The organization's goal is to promote community, creative interaction, respect, and therapeutic benefit. Shelter Music Boston believes all people deserve access to the dignity, creativity, and passion of classical music whether or not they have a home.

  • Silver Lining Mentoring

    Formerly AFC Mentoring
    • 2014 Social Innovator
    • Social Issue:
      Education & College Access
      Youth Development

    Silver Lining Mentoring (SLM), empowers foster youth in greater Boston to flourish through committed mentoring relationships and the development of essential life skills. SLM provides long term one-to-one mentoring and life skills development for young people who have been removed from their homes due to abuse or neglect.

  • Sisters Unchained

    • 2022 Social Innovator
    • Social Issue:
      Incarceration
      Women & Girls

    Sisters Unchained is a prison abolitionist organization dedicated to supporting young women and girls with incarcerated or formerly incarcerated parents. Sisters Unchained is a refuge space where young women of color can focus on loving and improving themselves and their communities in the way they see fit.

  • Innovator Spotlight

    Smart from the Start

    • 2011 Social Innovator
    • Social Issue:
      Early Childhood Education

    Smart from the Start is a family support, community engagement, and school readiness program that has as its mission to prevent the achievement gap among young children living in the lowest income families and communities.

  • SMART Team

    A division of Justice Resource Institute
    • 2016 Social Innovator
    • Social Issue:
      Mental Health
      Youth Development

    The SMART Team, a division of Justice Resource Institute, provides young people 13-24 years old, with the highest quality of mental health services in the places where they can be reached; their homes, schools, detention centers, DYS facilities, jails and prisons.

  • Social Capital Inc.

    • 2003 Social Innovator
    • Social Issue:
      Civic Engagement
      Financial Empowerment

    Social Capital Inc.'s (SCI) mission is to strengthen communities by connecting diverse individuals and organizations through civic engagement initiatives. SCI envisions a nation where individuals are strongly connected to their neighbors and play an active role in shaping the destiny of their communities. This increase in "social capital" will result in communities that are safer, healthier, and more vital.

  • Strategies for Youth (SFY)

    • 2018 Social Innovator
    • Social Issue:
      Incarceration

    Strategies for Youth (SFY) is a national nonprofit organization dedicated to improving police/youth interactions and reducing disproportionate minority contact. SFY achieves its mission by training law enforcement how to use developmentally-appropriate, trauma-informed, equitable approaches with youth; teaching youth how to navigate interactions with peers and police; and engaging in policy development and research on structural factors affecting law enforcement’s ability to work effectively with youth.

  • Strong Women, Strong Girls

    • 2007 Social Innovator
    • Social Issue:
      Education & College Access
      Women & Girls
      Youth Development

    Strong Women, Strong Girls supports positive mentoring relationships between college women and pre-adolescent girls in underserved local communities to help raise ambition and combat the dangers of low self-esteem.