Youth Organizing Overview

RYSE is committed to youth leadership and organizing and supports youth leadership through the Richmond Youth Organizing Team (RYOT).

The RYOT is a group of youth interns who are grounded in social justice principles and values. Interns participate in leadership training, explore issues in their communities, develop community organizing skills, and coordinate events to educate their peers. Interns also receive the holistic support services and trainings provided by the other departments at RYSE.

The RYOT weekly schedule is as follows:

  • Tuesdays: RYOT Meetings/Trainings

  • Wednesdays: Organizing Club

  • Thursdays: Gender Groups & Academic & Career Planning

  • Fridays: RYOT Film Fridays


Youth Organizing Internships

RYOT Interns and School Campaign Leaders develop leadership and public speaking skills, and receive academic and career goal setting support. These internships are for young people ages 13-21. Interns work 8-10 hours per week and receive a $200 monthly stipend

Richmond Youth Organizing Team (RYOT)

  • For youth interested in organizing and changing policies that negatively affect our communities.

  • Work with a group of your peers to create a safe, healthy, and youth-friendly Richmond

  • Weekly meetings at RYSE (5-7 PM on Tues, Wed, Fri )

  • Identity Group meetings on Thursdays

School Campaign Leaders (SCL)

  • For youth interested in supporting young voter registration.

  • Work with a group of your peers to register young people and collaborate with the community around voter engagement.

  • Weekly meetings at RYSE or on-campus. Meetings consist of voter education and trainings, one-on-one check-ins, and campus outreach.

For more information about youth organizing internships:
Contact Diana Diaz at or (510) 837-5499
and Carlos Lemus at or (510) 932-6489

In service to RYSE's Theory of Liberation, the purpose of the RYOT Organizing Club is to ensure that young people serve as key stakeholders and decision-makers on issues and policies impacting their individual and collective health and well-being, and spark the transformation of Richmond as a youth-friendly city.

RYOT is a group of both interns and RYSE members working together to create a safe, healthy, and youth-friendly Richmond through organizing campaigns and base-building.

RYOT's Reach

RYOT also engages youth in The California Endowment's (TCE) 10-year project called Building Healthy Communities, which is intended to support the development of communities where kids and youth are healthy, safe, and ready to learn.

Beginning in 2010 and for the next 10 years, this "place-based initiative" will invest hundreds of millions of dollars to improve the health in 14 California communities.

Free Our Dreams_Listen Sign (1).jpg


RYOT Core Principles

  1. Young people have the emotional, physical, and political safety to acquire tools, skills, and resources they need to understand and change inequities.

  2. Systems takeover by next generation leaders committed to a platform for liberation in which race, gender, sexuality, and/or asexual orientation are central.

  3. No policy, investment, or practice about young people of color without young people of color.

  4. Systems, both in policy and praxis, are responsive to the priorities and needs of young people as defined by young people.

“I have learned about organizing politically; by learning this I am able to figure out how to help my community. I have grown as a person by learning how to be more independent.”
— Former RYOT Intern

Youth Organizing Resources

RYSE strives to be a space that meets the needs of Richmond and West Contra Costa County youth. For those who are unable to access the Center or whose needs are beyond the scope of our services, we offer these additional resources.

Looking for more information?


Text @RYSERYOT to 81010 for updates from Youth Organizing.



You can help us make the difference. Whether it's through time or money, find ways to support our youth organizing work.