For generations, youth of color have sparked movements igniting a fight for safe, healthy and just schools and communities. Often they’ve waged long-term campaigns against great odds as they watch their schools become more like prisons than environments that foster growth and learning.

As the current debate swirls around arming teachers, more armed school resource officers and more cops policing schools and communities, young organizers like those at the Power U Center for Social Change and Dream Defenders in Florida are seizing the moment. They’re meeting with Parkland students and building intersectional alliances and visionary solutions that transcend the false, quick fix of more guns.

Youth-led organizations across the country are demanding to be heard and student leaders from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School are inspired, working toward a platform that is shared across race, class, gender and geography.

It is philanthropy’s turn to grab hold of the opportunity before us and advance the movement for a multiracial, cross-class alliance of young people standing up to demand a society free from all forms of violence. The Funders’ Collaborative on Youth Organizing calls on funders and donors to step up and into the moment. The kind of movement and leadership from young people needed now will not happen without sustained resources.

Let us not be here again in another 10 years, fighting the same bad policies and saying never again.

Read the full article about investing in youth-led social change by Mónica Córdova at