project leader
Lila M
227 E 102nd Street
(East Harlem, Lower East Side)
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the project

DMF Youth is fundraising for the 2021 Spring semester of online afterschool programs! We partner with Title 1 schools and homeless shelters across NYC to underserved students with programs designed to promote physical, mental, and emotional health. With the money raised here on ioby, we plan to expand our programming and start a new partnership with a school in East Harlem. The funds will also supplement our programs at PS 38 (East Harlem), River East Elementary (East Harlem), PS 126 (Lower East Side). 

DMF Youth programs are 100% free for all participating students. Our holistic approach to learning combines dance, academics, mentorship, and Social Emotional Learning (SEL). This model provides students with the tools they need to understand and express their personal strengths, challenges, and social responsibility. When we focus on social and emotional skills, students learn how to thrive in school, in work, and in their communities. 

DMF Youth's online learning model brings students together via Zoom to dance, catch up, and participate in SEL activities that explore themes like teamwork, leadership, self-care, and mindfulness. Every participating student will receive a care package containing a DMF Youth original activity, arts and crafts supplies, and everything they need for a fun, active, and healthy semester! Each day of programming, we'll get up and get dancing, release some stress, and complete an activity or craft together. 

Our services are more important than ever as our students face a  "new normal.”  Many students are experiencing isolation and mental health challenges as they adjust to life during the pandemic. DMF Youth provides a space for students to express their emotions, express their creativity, and interact with their peers. DMF Youth's mission to support the physical, mental, and emotional health of our students has never been more important.

the steps

Once we secure funding, we'll be able to lockdown a partnership with a new school in East Harlem! We'll have to hire new teachers and train them before Spring semester programs start again in early February and run to mid-June when the school year ends. 

Our spring semester will be virtual once again, so we'll also have to put together program materials (arts and crafts supplies, DMF Youth original activity sheets) in care packages and ship them out to all participating students! 


why we're doing it

Participation in afterschool programming is a key factor determining a child’s success in school and in life. Students who consistently attend afterschool programs have higher attendance rates, a stronger connection to their school, and  improved test scores. Despite the proven positive impact, there are 1.2 million students in NYC alone who do not have access to afterschool programs. This problem disproportionately affects low-income neighborhoods.

DMF Youth addresses this problem by working in neighborhoods where access to the arts and afterschool is limited. We make sure programs are accessible by offering them 100% for free. We are driven by the vision of an equitable education system, where all students are provided the opportunity to live healthy lives and become the best version of themselves.

As our students continue to adjust to remote learning and social distancing (does it ever get easier?) DMF Youth programs are especially essential. At a time when students' mental health is on the decline, our programs help students connect to others, get up and moving, and explore their passions outside of school. For our kids who have been staying home, DMF Youth sessions are often the only opportunity they have to exercise. Beyond physical activity, our programs help students cope with mental health challenges by teaching them about mindfulness, channeling positivity, and giving them a space to express their feelings (no matter how they're feeling!)

Health and wellness are always important, but these needs are even harder to fulfill during a pandemic. Our virtual programs bring a lot of light and joy into the lives of our students and we hope you will join us in strengthening communities, one student at a time. 



We were not able to establish a new partnership with a new school. because we did not have quite enough resources to hire and train new teachers. However, we were still able to expand our services. With the funds raised on ioby and other funding sources, we have been able to accept more students from East Harlem and LES in the program. The funds raised on ioby will go towards material fees for the new and returning students. 

TOTAL RAISED = $5,117.00
ioby Platform Fee $35.00
ioby Donation Processing Fee (3%) $137.46


If we hit our ioby fundraising goal, DMF Youth will be able to expand programming to a new school in East Harlem! The funds will also supplement our existing partnerships with PS 38 (East Harlem), River East Elementary(East Harlem) and PS 126 (Lower East Side). 

In order to set up a successful new partnership, we'll have to:

  • Hire a few new teachers 
  • Train the new teachers!
  • Purchase and ship arts & crafts supplies and program materials to all of our students

These are the main program fees that your donation will fund! 

ioby Platform Fee $35
ioby Donation Processing Fee (3%)
(Donation processing fee does not apply to match funding.)

Donation processing fees apply to donations only. 100% of match funding goes to projects. Please note, fees are estimated here and final numbers may change based on the final amount raised and amount of match funding applied to this campaign.


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This is where photos will go once we build flickr integration


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