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OUR STORY

About TSI

The Sonoran Initiative is a nonprofit organization committed to ending generational poverty within underserved communities.

We're changing underserved to deserving, breaking victimized language and taking control of our narrative.


How does one survive, transform and thrive when born into an unforgiving, resource lacking environment? Despite its surroundings, the Sonoran butterfly does just that by defying the odds and flourishing. We believe this analogy is akin to the unseen beauty and potential which resides within the urban landscape of our nation.


Despite its own treacherous environment, the Sonoran Desert Butterfly somehow defies the odds by surviving, transforming, and thriving. The Sonoran Initiative (TSI) compares that same phenomenon to the beauty, strength, and fortitude which exists within our urban landscapes. TSI focuses on a segment of our nation’s most vulnerable demographic: minority youth between the ages of 18-24. Our Fellows are coached to think beyond their zip codes and begin their journeys to personal and professional evolution. In creating TSI’s cohorts and partnerships, we considered our own personal struggles and the resources which would have helped us overcome so many of these obstacles during those critical years. In addition to our customized cohorts, our critical add-ons embrace mentorship, therapy, art, financial literacy, college support, and a scientific approach to understanding our strengths. Our cohorts align with emerging markets inclusive of technology, entrepreneurship, innovative arts and more. TSI understands the possibilities achieved by tapping into our youth's inherent tenacity, intelligence, natural ambition and grit and matching those talents with the appropriate spheres of influence. Together, with an exceptional board of directors and advisors, TSI is debunking inner-city stereotypes and creating new possibilities for our Fellows with the ultimate goal of breaking cycles of generational poverty patterns.

We are excited to share our story through our documentary film directed by NYU Professor and acclaimed Cannes and Sundance Film Festival winner Caran Hartsfield.