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Supporting refugee youth in taking their place as leaders within their communities and our world.

Alliance for Refugee Youth Support and Education

United States
ARYSE is a student-centered organization supporting immigrant and refugee youth in becoming engaged, confident, and celebrated. Through out-of-school-time programs emphasizing creativity, ARYSE youth gain the tools they need to thrive. ARYSE is a movement to create an innovative system that supports youth from the day they arrive in the U.S. and throughout the process of actualizing their dreams.
Introduction

What is ARYSE?

Jenna Baron, Executive Director
“Supporting immigrant and refugee youth integration requires intentionality, relationships, advocacy, and compassionate collaboration.”

Jenna Baron, Executive Director

At ARYSE, we know that immigrants and refugees are invaluable assets to our communities. Our students - immigrant and refugee youth living in Allegheny County - are talented, caring, resilient, and with adequate support, will take their place as leaders and change our world. Most of our students have experienced a long and stressful process of migration to the States, and our goal is to ensure that when they get here, they are greeted with the warmth, community, and support they deserve.

Over the course of a 7-year journey, we have deepened and expanded our commitment to being a student-centered organization supporting immigrant and refugee youth in becoming engaged, confident, and celebrated. Through out-of-school-time programming combining creative expression workshops, literacy-rich activities, one-on-one academic support, career and college readiness curriculum, and storytelling for social healing, our students gain the tools they need to take their place as leaders within their communities and our world. Most importantly, ARYSE is a movement to create an innovative, collaborative system that supports immigrant and refugee youth from the day they arrive in the U.S. and throughout the process of actualizing their dreams.

Our flagship program is PRYSE Academy, a summer program for immigrant and refugee youth in middle and high school. PRYSE Academy is how the movement started. In 2013, local refugee youth and college students from the University of Pittsburgh took action when they realized that English learners were not receiving adequate academic or social support as they settled into Pittsburgh. By organizing a summer program, PRYSE Academy, they sought to address real-life factors like poverty, discrimination, and cultural misunderstandings that often stand in the way of immigrant and refugee youth achieving their full potential.

In 2017, I transitioned to full-time Executive Director, and since then, we have established 3 new programs to accommodate the growing and diverse immigrant populations in our region. Our vision is for ARYSE to become an international model for supporting young people as they transition into their new lives. Our team is honored to continue this work in collaboration with our students, especially at a moment when it feels more important than ever to stand with immigrant and refugee communities.

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Innovation Overview
6 - 18
Age Group
-
Children/Users
1
Country
2013
Established
-
Organisation
246
Views
Tips for implementation
Partnerships with schools, immigrant-led community-based organizations, resettlement agencies, arts-based nonprofits, and universities combined with a passionate core team are the main resources that make our work possible. Like any youth-serving program, funding from individual donors and foundations is also essential for implementation.
Connect with innovator
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Media

See this innovation in action

In a foreign land, these youngsters spend their Pittsburgh summer piecing together a new language and confidence
Pittsburgh Summer Camp Introduces Refugees To U.S. Culture
ARYSE Students Present Photo Voice Exhibit!
Youth Steering Committee
Girls Art and Maker Group
After School Club
PRYSE Academy: A Place to Call Home

Milestones

Achievements & Awards

Map

Spread of the innovation

Steps

Inspired to implement this? Here's how...

01
Listen, Learn, and Research
It is critical that your first step in actualizing your innovation is listening to the individuals most impacted by the gap or inequity you hope to address.
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02
Build Your Team
You need a team that is passionate, skilled, energized, and understanding of the root causes of the issue your innovation seeks to address.
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03
Design Your Model and Activate Partnerships
Drawing on the information you have gathered and the assessment of resources already available in your community, design the model around the needs and goals of the immigrant and refugee populations you aim to serve.
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04
Reach Out!
Our vision is for ARYSE to become an international model for supporting refugee and immigrant youth as they transition into their new lives.
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