Positive Youth Development

This initiative is based on the principles of the 6 C’s which include confidence, character, connection, competence, caring and contribution.  This positive framework will guide our community in organizing services, opportunities, and support to assist our young people in reaching their full potential.

In March 2020, Tynkertopia faced the formidable task to reinvent themselves to continue serving youth in Flagstaff. They pivoted from an in-person model to a “we-deliver-to-kids” model. Throughout the pandemic, Tynkertopia delivered an average of 200 STEAM kits per week to children, predominately in the Sunnyside neighborhood. Each kit contained a STEAM Challenge with guidance, in English and Spanish, on how to build, create and solve the challenge; and materials (paper, glue sticks, tape rulers, rubber bands) required for each Challenge. Tynkertopia also created and posted videos to accompany the kits on their website and YouTube channel.
Meet Emily
“Emily’s adaptability and perseverance allowed her to complete her Gold Award during a pandemic.”

Emily recently received the highest honor a Girl Scout can earn – the Gold Award. The goal of Emily’s Gold Award project was to educate the community on the important role bees play in our ecosystem. She built bee houses and installed them in points of interest around Flagstaff. Prior to the pandemic, Emily led an in-person presentation on the importance of pollinating bees to nearly 1,000 children. When the pandemic hit, Emily quickly adapted her project to virtual lessons and self-education through her website. Through scouting, Emily has learned to be more confident, flexible, and has increased her leadership skills
Flagstaff Family Food Center
“Having a safe place to come when my husband and I are having a hard day is priceless.”

During COVID-19, we met a family experiencing a number of hardships. Dealing with a rare brain disease the mom was forced her to leave her job, and the dad, a disabled veteran, was let go from his job due to COVID-19 layoffs at his company. The family has three boys: ages 12, 8, and 4, and until recently, all three attended school remotely. For weeks, the parents felt overwhelmed with stress. During a recent visit to the Reading Room, their boys were able to choose books and participate in a STEM activity with Lowell Observatory, while their parents received community resources.
Meet Jacob
“When shelter staff ask me how my day is going, I tell them what I learned at work.””

After only a few weeks at Northland Family Help Center, Jacob, 17, has learned how to write a resume and interview for his very first job. In fact, after his very first time interviewing, Jacob received multiple job offers from several companies. With great joy and pride, Jacob expressed, “I was so nervous, but Northland Family Help Center prepared me for my interviews. You won’t believe it, but I got a job as a waiter!” One month later, Jacob is working and enrolled in the Young Adult Program, where he is furthering his skills and mapping out his journey for success in adulthood.
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The mission of LAUNCH Flagstaff is to advance a culture of world-class education for every child in Flagstaff from cradle through career.

LAUNCH Flagstaff, a wide ranging and unique partnership of community stakeholders, is dedicated to creating and maintaining a world-class education for all Flagstaff students using a Collective Impact collaboration framework. LAUNCH Flagstaff serves as an impartial backbone for partner organizations to collaborate in a framework of collective impact. We do this by:

In the Collective Impact framework, partners are convening around specific outcomes and committing to using local data on an ongoing basis to get better results toward those outcomes. This collaboration, which began last year after several years of community input and study, is housed at the United Way, and receives major funding from the Arizona Community Foundation of Flagstaff and The Wharton Foundation. It is not a program or service, but a diverse group representing schools (pre-K through graduate school), businesses, government partners, service organizations, private education providers, non-profit groups, and concerned citizens who recognize that the issues facing our educational system are not just the responsibility of our schools.

LAUNCH Flagstaff


According to a Coconino County Public Health Services District report, the suicide rate in Coconino County is higher than state and national rates.  In 2018, there were 43 recorded deaths by suicide.  Nearly half of the suicide-related deaths in the County between 2010 and 2015 were for people aged 10 – 24.

“We are providing the infrastructure in which our partner organizations can share resources, share accountability, share successes and have a collective community impact on improving educational outcomes,” said Paul Kulpinski, a former Flagstaff United School District Governing Board member who left his position to take the helm at LAUNCH Flagstaff. LAUNCH Flagstaff serves as a clearinghouse for information, data and strategies that lead to continuous improvement of each member’s individual work, thus propelling the success of all members

Areas of Focus

We look forward to sharing our results in the following areas of focus: