165 Broadway
Somerville, MA 02145
617-625-6600 ext. 2255

In 2003, responding to increasing drug use, the rise of gangs, and an alarming rate of suicide among adolescents, Somerville’s newly-elected mayor, Joseph Curtatone, commissioned Teen Empowerment to assess the situation and then asked TE to bring our programs to help address the needs. TE’s site opened in the city in the fall of 2004.

Now, Teen Empowerment operates a youth organizing site in Somerville, MA that employs youth ages 14-20 to work in year-round youth leadership jobs. The focus of their work is to involve a large number of their peers in positive community involvement and to bring youth voice into City policies.

In addition, TE works with the City of Somerville to bring youth leadership into City departments. These initiatives employ Somerville teens to plan and implement workshops, events, dialogue sessions, and other projects. Currently they include:

Youth Mental Wellness Amassadors

The Youth Mental Wellness Ambassadors Program offers teen-led workshops and events that teach coping skills and destigmatize mental health. Ambassadors also produced three powerful short videos. Watch, and share widely!

Youth-Police Work

Somerville youth and police work together to plan and implement a series of Walking Dialogue Sessions each summer and to work to measure and improve perceptions of public safety among Somerville residents.

Library Leaders

Peer leaders plan and implement game nights, maker space and teen events at the Somerville Public Library

Youth Matters Media

Youth run their own weekly television show on Somerville City Cable in partnership with CityTV and SCATV. Check out there first video by clicking here.


Students at East Somerville Community School meet twice per week to plan and implement various school climate initiatives.

Circle of Next Leaders

Students at Somerville’s alternative middle and high school plan and implement enrichment activities and school climate initiatives that involve the whole school.

Somerville Youth Workers Network

TE staff facilitate this group of youth workers from across the city that meets monthly to do joint needs assessment, planning, and collaborate on various initiatives.


June Newsletter Highlights

What's the value of a youth job? Jobs keep teens safe, increase their chances of succeeding in school, and decrease their chances of joining…