BYOP’s adult staff is made up of organizers and social justice workers who are here to support the Youth Council and Youth Organizing Team. They have all worked as youth organizers and have been involved in youth justice work since they themselves were school-age youth, and are trained in the tools, strategies, and practices that BYOP’s Youth Council and Youth Organizing Team use to create positive social change.
Najma Nazy’at is the Director/Lead Organizer of the Boston Youth Organizing Project (BYOP). Najma has worked in youth programs and in the youth development field for over twenty years. She previously served as a Youth Program Coordinator of the Central Branch YMCA’s Teen Center. After the YMCA, Najma served on a team at The Medical Foundation as a lead trainer to usher in the Boston BEST Initiative, a professional development and field building effort that supports Youth Development systematically and institutionally. Najma has consulted and trained nationally with organizations such as the Boston Community Building Curriculum, Interaction Institute for Social Change, and Listen, Inc.
Office Manager/Support Staff
Hello, my name is Lacresha Johnson. I am the office manager and an adult support staff at BYOP and a Micah Fellow. I came to BYOP through a program called Life Together, a program created by the Episcopal Diocese of Massachusetts. Life Together is a program that creates prayerful and prophetic leaders who deeply care about social justice and faith and uses the two to create community. Life Together placed me at BYOP, but what brought me to BYOP and this program is a deep sense of community. The second semester of my junior year of college I studied abroad in Cuernavaca, Mexico To say those 5 months abroad changed my life would be an understatement. Mexico allowed me to recall the importance of giving back, community, and supporting young people. It revealed that we are in a world where there is constant injustice & inequality and that youth were taking the brunt of it. When I came back to the US for my senior year, I knew I could not just go right to graduate school. I had to use this newfound passion and use it. That is when I found the Life Together program; it allowed me to create community, give back, support young people, and gave me the tools to start changing the inequalities in the world. Seeing the empowered youth a BYOP that go out and make a change in the communities, schools, and nation is something that brings me back every day. BYOP has harnessed and deepened my passion for social justice, community, and young people so much so that I have committed to another year.