We envision a future where every young person can attain economic mobility, regardless of ZIP code, educational background, or race.
Spark the Journey’s vision begins by asking, “What would our world look like if every young person had the freedom and opportunity to embrace their dreams, whatever they look like?” By building a culture and community of support that makes this question a reality, America will be a country that lives up to its promises of equal opportunity and economic mobility—and ensures that every next generation can lead a successful life of their own choosing.
Our community’s young adults are creative, capable, and powerful. And it’s our mission to help them achieve success in today’s society.
Spark the Journey provides young adults with mentorship and community, empowering them to chart their own paths to a fulfilling life. Whether through educational or vocational attainment or entrepreneurship, every young person deserves the opportunity to succeed.
Many young adults from low-income households face income inequality, attend under-resourced schools, live in under-resourced neighborhoods, and lack generational wealth.
With adequate mentorship, community, and support, they can achieve their full potential.
Our journey began in Washington, D.C., in 1993 with four high school students and a dream.
Originally known as Capital Partners for Education, we’ve seen the impact of connecting students with supportive mentors within their communities to help them achieve their dreams. Mentoring is a powerful catalyst for changing life trajectories, but more was needed to achieve our vision to increase socioeconomic mobility for underserved young adults.
In the years that followed, we partnered with schools and researchers to refine and expand our offerings.
Approximately 90 percent of children in D.C. living in poverty are Black. Income inequality and poverty remains an issue for Black and Brown families. This startling statistic is why we have continued to evolve, so we can better create opportunities for youth economic advancement.
We’ve inherited an unequal world. Spark the Journey supports young adults with leveling the playing field by equipping them with a community of support as they shape their own destiny.
Your neighborhood and the education it affords you is important for economic mobility, but not as important as your social network.
Social capital is generated through community connections. With it, the possibilities for economic advancement are near endless. Greater community collaboration can help bridge the gap for youth without organic social connections and support for their professional endeavors.
Our unique mentorship approach fosters long-lasting relationships between mentors and mentees as young adults pursue their goals, backed by a community of support.
Our values of compassion, commitment, equity, and excellence are rooted in the work we do. We strive to execute them every day and with everyone we encounter.
Leading with compassion
Compassion means appreciating that each person brings their own life experience to their relationship with Spark the Journey—and that helping young people achieve their dreams requires leaning into this understanding when obstacles stand in their way.
Commitment to sustainable impact
We are steadfast in our support—standing with students, mentors, and our partners to earn their trust so that together, we can make a long-lasting difference in the lives of young people.
Achieving fairness is the driving force of our mission. It embodies our belief that in order to pursue their dreams, every young person deserves equal access to opportunities to attain success.
We model what achieving one’s dreams looks like—and help young people define what success looks like for them—by having high standards and ensuring that we meet them.
OUR COMMITMENT TO EQUITY
At Spark the Journey, equity means ensuring that everyone regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, religion, ability, and physical and mental health have access to the same opportunities – that they’re able to participate fully and fairly to achieve success in their own right. We believe in the inherent worth, dignity, and equality of all people and endeavor to create a culture where everyone can show up as their full selves each and every day. Our commitment to equity starts within our organization and extends to the community of people we serve. Read our full statement on equity.