Founded in 2018, The Youth Fund (TYF) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and is registered with the New York State Attorney General. We envision a premier platform that connects Asian-American youth with positive role models who can guide and inspire them to become independent, contributing members of the American society. Learn more about our current work here.
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The Youth Fund creates an ecosystem where industry leaders serve as mentors and share knowledge with Asian-American youth in order to further their understanding of available career choices and required qualifications, with the view that they will gain the knowledge and confidence necessary to become independent, contributing members of the American society. We achieve the mission by:
- Offering mentoring and support programs for pre-career youth and young professionals to assist in their career development and adjustment to workplace culture.
- Producing digital contents through online platforms to share knowledge, research and experience regarding professional development.
The Social Need
For many individuals, education is an investment in human capital and starting point for a bright future. However, it is always challenging for young people to navigate the transition from their roles as students to independent contributing members of the community, and to achieve career success in the workplace.
The challenge is compounded in the case of Asian-American youth, who have to learn to adapt to new culture and experiences that may be dissimilar to their own. According to the research published by Asian-American Journal of Psychology, Asian-American college students are 1.6 times more likely than other Americans to make a suicide attempt; and they are three times less likely than their peers to seek mental health services.
The crisis is more acute among recent immigrants. A recent survey by Yale researchers found that 45 percent of Chinese international students on campus reported symptoms of depression, and 29 percent reported symptoms of anxiety, compared to roughly 13 percent among the general population in American universities. Those findings are corroborated by reports from other American campuses. At the mention of Chinese- or Asian-Americans, the general population thought of them as being educated, hardworking and having strong family values. But the most common top-of-mind negative impressions included not being proficient in English and a tendency to self-segregate, according to surveys conducted by the Committee of 100.
The issues have become more urgent in recent years with an increasing number of Asian immigrants studying in the U.S. Many struggle with language barriers, cultural and work style differences, identity crisis, social isolation, job market competitions, as well as enormous pressures and expectations from their families. They need a support system that is tailored to their special needs and therefore are able to address their pressing problems.
We also believe that Asian-Americans who have established themselves in their chosen fields need a way to give back to the community. To be able to foster the growth of the next-generation of Asian-Americans is a rewarding and fulfilling experience for our mentors. TYF provides an excellent vehicle for accomplished Asian-Americans to participate and contribute to the American society.
Our Philosophy & Approach
Today, less than 1 percent of foundation and government funding goes to charities focused on the Asian community. The Youth Fund is created in response to the challenges facing Asian-American youth and our community relations.
According to the recent survey conducted by the Performance-based Hiring Learning Systems, 85% of all jobs in America are filled via networking.
We believe in the power of role models, mentoring, social interactions and knowledge-sharing. We serve as bridge builder between cultures for Asian-American youth integrating with their community. We provide opportunities to bring together industry leaders, successful professionals and career development experts to show the next generation how to adapt to workplace culture and improve themselves professionally. We also invite students at leading American colleges to serve as “next generation mentors” who can share their academic and internship experiences with younger students. Connecting youth with Asian-Americans who have found success in all walks of life and showing them a way to achieve similar success would be crucial in addressing their pressing needs for role models.
Our goal is to build a healthy human capital ecosystem where multiple generations of Asian-Americans would connect with and support one another, realizing their potential for professional development and finding personal growth in the process.
The Youth Fund team has a diverse range of backgrounds and skill sets, but we share a common passion for giving back and serving the community. The founders leverage their funds, networks, experiences and expertise to support the next generation of Asian-Americans. Our Honorary Board is composed of highly accomplished individuals in their respective fields. We also would like to invite more visionary leaders to join our efforts. Meet the team.