Hyde Square Task Force
HSTF’s mission is to amplify the power, creativity, and voices of youth, connecting them to Afro-Latin culture and heritage so they can create a diverse, vibrant Latin Quarter and build a just, equitable Boston. We believe that communities are stronger when they create the conditions youth need to thrive. By harnessing the power, creativity, and voices of youth, we not only help them navigate the journey of adolescence but help youth become leading voices of change in their community. HSTF was founded in 1991, when a coalition of neighbors and community leaders felt a sense of urgency to address the growing violence, economic, and social challenges facing the Hyde/Jackson Square neighborhood of Jamaica Plain. Now known as Boston’s Latin Quarter, our community has transformed into a vibrant neighborhood. Despite the progress, like in other urban neighborhoods, our youth continue to struggle with high levels of poverty, community violence, and low educational attainment.
Annually, HSTF engages 830 children, youth, and college students through Jóvenes en Acción, College Success, and community-based and in-school arts education. Our artistic performances, cultural events, and community organizing efforts reach over 5,000 community members each year.
• Jóvenes en Acción: Provides integrated in-depth after-school programming in three
areas: Afro-Latin Arts, Education and Career Pathways (includes pre-vocational services and mentoring), and Civic Engagement and Youth Organizing, to youth in grades 8-12.
• College Success: Provides pre-college support to Jóvenes youth, a Spring and Summer Academy for rising first-year college students, and ongoing coaching to college students.
•Creative Development and Community Engagement: Strengthens our neighborhood through creative placemaking/keeping, advocacy and organizing, development of the Latin Quarter, and community-based Afro-Latin arts education.