The Buckingham Youth Brigade

The Buckingham Youth Brigade (BYB) was established in 1998 as the BU-GATA tenants association identified the need for a teen leadership group within the Buckingham Neighborhood (ages 14-18). The group meets once a week with tutors to get individualized help on homework and once a week for workshops where the group engages as a team. The program focuses on developing leadership skills, building interpersonal confidence, gaining a sense of hope for the future, strengthening academic skills, and graduating from high school. In addition to these goals, one of the most important aspects of the Buckingham Youth Brigade is the sense of belonging that each youth feels upon joining the group. It becomes a home away from home for many teens and has been an integral component in the success of graduating over 150 students from the program over the past 15 years.

During the BYB workshops, several skills and development assets are enriched. They also serve as the foundation of where teen designed projects take place that have resulted in countywide recognition. Some of these accomplishments include:

  • In 2000, the youth designed, painted and installed a public multi-cultural mural on the side of Glebe Market, a Latino grocery store that is a stable landmark within the community.
  • In 2009, the youth facilitated and wrote, Who Are Arlington's Immigrants, a report on the issues and needs of Arlington’s immigrants. In this report students interviewed several Arlington Immigrants from various origins with the goal of discovering what needs were not being addressed. This project resulted in a number of presentations to community members and County officials including reports to the Arlington County Housing Commission and Arlington County Board.
  • In 2010 the BYB teens facilitated and wrote, What's Good A-Town, a report that researched and highlighted four core areas of interest to Arlington’s teens: Youth Jobs, Volunteer Opportunities, Leisure activities and Career and Education Goals. This project also resulted in several presentations to County staff. 
  • In 2011, The Buckingham Youth Brigade was nominated and then awarded the James B. Hunter Award, a prestigious Human Rights Award presented each year by Arlington County.

If you need further assistance or guidance, call BU-GATA or visit our Outreach Office.  Information on our Contact page.