Who are we and what do we do?
Young Merchants Club, an LLC Founded in 2012 has pioneered a socially responsible therapy model
that provides a curriculum that focuses on developing selfhood, entrepreneurship and empathy in at
risk youth while providing a real-world opportunity for them in the form of self-started businesses.
How it works:
We help our youth members make better long-term choices through transferable life-skills that include
alternatives to violence, increasing communication skills, conflict resolution, active listening
and legacy through literacy.
Our simple lessons involve micro case-studies, turbo articles and swift media excerpts. We make our lessons
less dense with content while instead honing in on the core skills youth need in order to thrive in real-world
circumstances; critical thinking, patience, discipline, resilience and empathy.
All of our lesson are on our website portal and can only be accessed by school administrators and student merchants.
Each week students Log in for a five-step module which includes:
- Lesson overview
- Introduction video
- Core materials
Each module usually takes approximately 15 to 30 minutes to complete.
Designated faculty can also log in and monitor the student merchants and their progress. Faculty have the ability to suspend
a student account for school infractions and / or make comments on their work.
When student merchants sign up for YMC they will be given the option to start creating a business plan based on whatever
industry they have an interest in. Prompted with several general questions such as the name of the business, the business
idea, the target market for their service or product and the unique aspects of their business idea, students will craft
their idea into a simple presentation no more than a page long.
How you can help
Students will then be expected to work with faculty on building a budget for their idea.
Anyone who visits our website can view student profiles and business plans. When they read a profile or plan that appeals
it them they can “sponsor” a student merchant by donating to their business plan. Eventually when the student merchant
meets their funding goal they work with school faculty and family members to begin to implementing their plan using the
What Sponsors receive
In appreciation of sponsor donations to our student-merchants, YMC gifts them merchandise such as boutique-style high
quality t shirts, hats, hoodies and even socks.
Benefits to Sponsors
Benefits to organizations
- Receive cool t-shirts and other items
- Be actively engaged in community service by contributing to the future of young people
- Our merchandise serve as great conversation starters at social gatherings
- Get updates on student-merchandise progress
Benefits to student participants
- YMC is a viable alternative to criminal detention for at-risk and court-involved youth.
- Students must maintain a healthy GPA and behavioral school record to remain in our program. For at-risk students, school may need to have an extra incentive. YMC provides monetary benefit for students, which is very attractive for young people and sufficient to keep them engaged academically.
- YMC pedagogy meets Department of Elementary and Secondary Education standards (DESE)-
- School faculty will have help. YMC Merchant Mentors act as a mediators that will encourage youth members to be resilient and push forward in achieving academic success.
- Legal Earnings - Students will develop a business plan that may lead to legal income
- Civic engagement – By participating in the overall theme of bettering their community by bettering themselves, youth learn to hold themselves accountable. By participating in the civic process of opening a bank account, filing taxes etc. they are able to see how their sales-work plays a larger role in society
- Transferable skills – Active listening, goal-setting, articulating themselves are all critical life-skills that are transferable into other genres like college, interviewing, and employment in general.
- Leadership ability – YMC gives students an opportunity to show any hidden skills of leadership that they may possess as well as learn to be fair and equitable to subordinates when in a leadership role.
- Self-esteem – Youth learn that they are capable of accomplishing their goals. This builds confidence that will lead to many successful endeavors later in life.