Agents of Change: City Builders

The Centre for Social Innovation has teamed up with 14 outstanding partners to support eleven great ideas for a better New York City.

Great cities are the product of engaged and active citizens. The types of people who insist on rolling up their sleeves to make their city a better place. The Agents of Change: City Builders program was created to give these dreamers, doers and innovators a helping hand. Out of 150 applications we received, we are proud to announce our 2015 Agents of Change: City Builders!

2015 Agents of Change: City Builders

Credit Do

Credit Do's aims to break the cycle of financial exclusion specific to youth’s patterns with credit cards, work opportunity and affordability of college.


Safe Passage Project Corporation

Safe Passage Project Corporation addresses the unmet legal needs of immigrant youth living in New York by ensuring they know about the legal options and services available to them.


TYTHEdesign's Community Capacity Lab

TYTHEdesign's Community Capacity Lab equips civil servants and nonprofit professionals with the capacity to integrate design thinking processes into the way their agencies design and deliver services.


New Women New Yorkers (NWNY)

NWNY is a cross-community nonprofit dedicated to empowering young women immigrants, particularly low-income women and single mothers, living in New York City.


Appigi, LLC

Appigi is a directory and data tool for social service professionals used to ensure their clients are safe, healthy, housed, educated, and employed.




PopUp Forest: Times Square

PopUp Forest: Times Square will put a slice of real nature in the heart of NYC.





BK Farmyards

BK Farmyards is a collective of urban farmers dedicated to the advancement of social justice through urban agricultural production and training.


White Roof Project

White Roof Project paints the roofs of low-income and non-profit buildings white to promote environmental education, advocacy and community building while reducing the summer temperatures on the inside.



Akimbo’s mission is to build an inclusive workforce by connecting underserved individuals to professional opportunities.



#YesWeCode, an initiative of Dream Corps Unlimited

#YesWeCode is a national initiative committed to training 100,000 low-opportunity youth to become high-level computer programmers.


The CHAMPION Network

CHAMPION Network is a 1-year membership-based employment program for young adults who are looking learn, grow and flourish in their careers.





Interested in connecting with one of our Agents of Change? Contact Christine Rico, Agents of Change Facilitator for more information.

Agents of Change Partners


Benefits of Being an Agent of Change

  • Beginning in January 2015, you will receive one Hot Desk 100 package for one year, providing you with 100 hours of free monthly workspace + four hours of meeting room space for up to two people in your organization to work on your city-building project.
  • Opportunity to leverage our promotional channels to help you get the word out including our newsletter, intranet, email listserve, social media channels, magazine and websites.
  • Get your foot in the door and attend an exclusive session with each of our partners to learn from their experiences and to discuss the opportunities, challenges and obstacles to city building.
  • Participation in an exclusive bimonthly peer circle with your fellow Agents facilitated by CSI’s Executive Director.
  • Free consultations with experts in law, design, accounting, fundraising, and financing.
  • Receive priority access to apply for a 0% interest loan for up to $5,000 that's crowdfunded on Kiva Zip.
  • Complimentary Urbanist Professional Membership in the Municipal Art Society of New York.
  • Expand your personal network by connecting to New York City's most dynamic social innovation community.

A look at 2014 Agent of Change winner Drive Change

Tired of seeing young men circulating back into the prison system, CSI member Jordyn Lexton decided to do something about it. We look at her organization Drive Change, which builds and operates locally sourced food trucks that hire, teach and empower formerly incarcerated youth. We also meet Andre Ward of the Osborne Association, which offers opportunities for individuals who have been in conflict with the law to transform their lives through innovative, effective, and replicable programs.


Photo credit: leeaison via Flickr