Youth Development


aka SJLI

Inglewood, CA


At the Social Justice Learning Institute, we are dedicated to improving the education, health, and well being of youth and communities of color by empowering them to enact social change through research, training, and community mobilization.

Ruling Year


Executive Director

Dr. D'Artagnan Scorza Ph.D.

Main Address

600 Centinela Avenue

Inglewood, CA 90302 USA


Equity, Social Justice, Health, Education, Environment, Empowerment





Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Youth Development Programs (O50)

Public Health Program (E70)

Education N.E.C. (B99)

IRS Filing Requirement

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Social Media


Programs + Results

What we aim to solve

SJLI primarily serves the South Los Angeles County population including Inglewood, Lennox, Watts, South Los Angeles, East Los Angeles, Compton, and Los Angeles County’s Second and Fourth Districts. These communities are high-need and fraught with the challenges of high rates of un- and under-employment and under resourced support systems. In California, Black students make up 6% of the student population, but make up 30% of students who are arrested and referred to law enforcement on campus. SJLI aims to break this school-to-prison pipeline by empowering students with educational tool to not only help navigate themselves to graduate high school, but to also graduate college and create healthy environments. We work with youth, residents, local schools, school districts and city officials in these areas to increase educational opportunities and health access through innovative community programs, initiatives, and projects that facilitate the conditions that advance social change.

Our programs

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Educational Equity

Health Equity

Where we work

Charting Impact

Five powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What is the organization aiming to accomplish?

What are the organization's key strategies for making this happen?

What are the organization's capabilities for doing this?

How will they know if they are making progress?

What have they accomplished so far and what's next?

We work to: 1. build capacity for individuals and communities to advocate for their needs; 2. train and build leaders; 3. educate and empower youth and community members to identify and rectify injustice; and 4. deliver effective programs, resources, and support that help advance our mission.

To accomplish our goals, we work with youth, residents, local schools, districts, and city officials to increase educational opportunities through innovative programs and sustainable practices. We also develop and manage programs that advance academic, food, and environmental justice. Our theory of change includes three steps: 1. Empowering through education: we use education as a tool to empower communities of color to unlock their creative ability to change their lives and the world around them. 2. Creating thriving communities: we work to transform neighborhood conditions by improving the built environment and expanding access to resources that enable residents to be healthy and thrive. 3. Change systems: we build power within our communities to identify and rectify systems of injustice and to advance policies that directly impact their lives.

SJLI's demonstrated capabilities include what SJLI has already accomplished. SJLI's Urban Scholars program is currently at high school sites in South LA and Compton. Since 2009, over 500 Urban Scholars have graduated and become alumni that pursued post-secondary education at four-year colleges. There are an additional 1,500 students who, while not enrolled, have benefited from Urban Scholars programming such as seminars, college tours, and field trips. In terms of our Health Equity programming, SJLI trains over 2,000 community members annually through its Healthy Eating Active Living class series at over 30 local sites. SJLI has built over 103 community, school, and home gardens in our target area. SJLI continues to maintain community and school gardens, and support home gardeners with education, seedling, and supplies. Additionally, SJLI serves nearly 1000 families and distribute over 7,000 pounds of produce every month at its Food for Thought Produce Pickups.

SJLI measures progress by examining the quality and quantity of our provided programs. We want to make sure that every person we serve receives the services they need. For our education programs, this means that we consistently aim for a high rate of high school graduation and college admission. But we also want to make sure that we are able to expand our services to more people. Therefore, our expansion from having education and health programs to also having Creative Arts programs is considered progress. Our expansion efforts outside of Los Angeles would also be a great indicator of our progress as an organization.

Recently, the Urban Scholars program has been expanded to include young women of color at one of its partnering schools. SJLI also began its expansion efforts to bring its Urban Scholars program to Houston, TX in spring 2018. We have also obtained a contract with the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health to conduct healthy lifestyle education throughout Inglewood, Lennox, and South Los Angeles communities as part of the County's Champions for Change Initiative. As part of the Healthy and Sustainable Inglewood Collaborative, SJLI helped craft and finalize the Inglewood and Lennox Greening Plan in 2016. The plan identifies community-driven strategies for urban greening, food and urban agriculture, water, transportation, air quality, land use, energy and waste, and community engagement. SJLI is also working to reduce the consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages, and has partnered with American Heart Association, Assemblymember Autumn Burke, and Senator Holly Mitchell to do so.

External Reviews



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The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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  • Forms 990 for 2018, 2017 and 2016
  • A Pro report is also available for this organization.

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Board Leadership Practices

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section, which enables organizations and donors to transparently share information about essential board leadership practices.

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization


Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?



Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?



Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?



Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?



Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?