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Youth Lead the Change

Youth Lead the Change is participatory budgeting process where young Bostonians decide how to spend $1,000,000 of the city’s budget.

The Mayor’s Youth Council runs this process and shares rule-making authority with youth organizations across the City.

Where are we now?

write the rules
collect ideas
develop proposals

Collect ideas: December - January

Everyone is welcome to propose project ideas, no matter how old you are or where you live.

We will hold public events to collect ideas throughout the City, plus smaller “pop-up” discussions in classes, after-school programs, clubs, and public spaces like T stops, malls, and supermarkets. You will also be able to submit your ideas online and through social media. We will update this page with the specific social media links.

You can request translation and interpretation services from the button requesting our team to come to you to collect ideas.

Mayor Walsh and participants in the 2014 Youth Lead the Change program

Develop proposals

In the spring, volunteers called Change Agents turn ideas into projects for the public to vote on.

We train Change Agents during orientation sessions, when they join a committee to develop project proposals around specific issues.

Vote! Check back soon for dates!

You can vote to decide what gets funded if:

  • you live in Boston, and
  • are 12 – 25 years old. 

You can only vote once. Voting locations will be at schools, community centers, and T stations. If you are a Boston Public Schools (BPS) student, you can vote online. We will post all project proposals online so you can research what you will vote for. After the vote, Mayor Walsh will announce the winning projects and assign projects to a City department with a dedicated project manager.

Past winners

Project Title Funding Status
New sidewalks for new parks (2014) $110,000 Complete
Security cameras at Dr. Loesch Family Park (2014) $105,000 Complete
Paris St. extreme makeover (2014) $100,000 Complete
Techknowledge - Chromebooks for high schools (2014) $90,000 Complete
Franklin Park Playground upgrade (2014) $453,000 Complete
Skate park feasibility study (2014) $50,000 In progress
Boston art walls (2014) $60,000 In progress
Wicked Free WiFi for students (2015) $119,000 In progress
Water bottle refill stations (2015) $260,000 In progress
Boston Latin Academy gym renovation (2015) $475,000 In progress
Hubway expansion (2015) $101,600 Complete
More trash cans and recycling bins (2016) $80,000 In progress
Job and resource finder app (2016) $135,000 In progress
Parks are for everyone (2016) $500,000 In progress
Wicked Free WiFi 3.0 (2016) $150,000 In progress
Link Up: digital billboards in schools (2016) $100,000 In progress
Sunshine and books (2016) $25,000 In progress