Techie Youth

Techie Youth

You can save children's lives & reduce homelessness with technology!

Are you ready to "give" thanks by paying it forward?

Techie Youth

Are you ready to "give" thanks by paying it forward?

You can save children's lives with technology while
dramatically reducing new cases of homelessness

  • Over 80% of homeless people
    were formerly youths in foster care
  • Foster-care youth aged 18-21
    "age out" of the system and are essentially abandoned to be on their own in the world without any preparation or guidance
  • 25,000 youths "age-out" each year
    most end up living on the streets or in jail, drug addicted, involved in crime...
  • It is never the kids' fault
    nearly all of them enter foster care due to severe parental abuse or extreme neglect
You are capable of fixing this, learn how...

Nearly 100% of aged-out youth drop out of school, have absolutely no parental or adult guidance, no life skills, no qualifications and no sustainable living arrangements.

Techie Youth is a NY-based 501(c)3 not-for-profit charity


The Techie Youth solution: leveraging education in IT/web-technologies to completely-redirect the roadmap of youth-at-risk towards a path of life success

child ice fishing
Immediate Goal

Teach foster-care youth a profession that will save and ensure their future

Give a man a fish and he eats for a day.
    Teach a man to fish and he eats for life...

child hugging stuffed animal
Long-Term Goal

Curtailing the homeless-problem at its source, before youth-at-risk become homeless

The initiative is simple

We provide free IT education to any adolescent or young-adult in the foster-care system who is motivated to learn a trade.

Technology is the key differentiator

Rather than educating towards a manual-labor trade or college degree, Techie Youth trains and prepares kids to become career-professionals in the computer/IT sector.

The solution is in the tech-sector

IT has immediate tangible job-opportunities, is often merit-based and does not require a degree for hire, and has amongst the highest average earnings of any professional-field, plus to date there has been a constant hiring-need regardless of economy.

Huge rewards for program success

Any of the students who embrace the education could within a very short time be earning much more than what is required to live adequately, certainly enough to avoid homelessness and to be financially-motivated to steer away from risky-influences.

This initiative's long-term effects will demonstrate themselves within just a few years via dramatically-reduced new cases of aged-out youth living on the streets

You have the power to save children's lives - helping will be very rewarding and is easy too...


WPIX 11 News at the Bushwick Techie Youth Center

ABC Viewpoint interviews T.Y. Long Island students

Ed Oates, Co-founder, Oracle Corporation

Everyone keeps saying "Study STEM", and that is true enough. But how do you get on that path if you are in foster-care without parents involved in your life?

Techie Youth gets foster-kids started using practical steps from which they can earn actual money in a computer-career while helping others with their technical challenges.

They not only become the experts, but also learn valuable skills in dealing with people, researching technical questions, and communicating answers in a concise way to those who do not know as much about technology. With those skills and effort, they can earn their way up the technology career ladder.
Techie Youth is a great place to start!

- Edward A. Oates, Co-founder, Oracle Corporation
Craig Newmark, Founder, Craigslist

Everyone deserves a break, and children in foster care could use a hand that helps seriously empower them, that connects them to others in similar circumstances, and that provides career opportunities for a successful career and life.
Techie Youth does just that.

- Craig Newmark, Founder, Craigslist
Minerva Tantoco, NYC CTO

'The future is already here, it just isn't evenly distributed,' is one of my favorite quotes from sci-fi writer William
Gibson. For me it highlights that access to progress and change is not always evenly or equitably distributed.

In New York City, we're committed to building a smart and equitable city that broadens access to tech for all New Yorkers. That's why NYC is proud of organizations like Techie Youth, who provide opportunities to New Yorkers who might not otherwise have them.

- Minerva Tantoco, Chief Technology Officer for the City of New York
Steven Bandrowczak, SVP, HP

Techie Youth has a phenomenal mission, guiding the most-neglected "forgotten" youth
of our society to grow into self-sufficient contributing career-driven IT professionals.

We at HP wholeheartedly support this important cause, and look forward to
Techie Youth's success in reducing homelessness nationwide while simultaneously
strengthening our IT workforce - that benefits everyone!

- Steven Bandrowczak, Senior Vice President, HP Global Business Service
held former roles as CIO of HP, Lenovo, Nortel, Avnet & DHL

WNYW Fox5 News visits the Techie Youth Center

Techie Youth on News 12 Brooklyn

[Español] NY1 Noticias: en T.Y.

[Español] El Diario La Prensa

[Español] Univision en Techie Youth

ABC Here & Now interviews T.Y. Manhattan students

NY1 News visits the Techie Youth Manhattan classroom

How You Can Help

Sponsor saving a child


Sponsor saving a child

Save the lives of three kids


Save the lives of three kids

Save an entire group-home (orphanage for older youth)


Save an entire group-home (orphanage for older youth)

Shared city sponsorship


Shared city sponsorship

Expand Techie Youth into a new city - you select the city. Each city needs 3 contributors.
Sponsor a classroom


Sponsor a classroom

You may name the classroom after a person or company of your choosing.
Bring Techie Youth to kids in a new location


Bring Techie Youth to kids in a new location

Sponsor expansion to the city of your choice
Save all the foster kids in an entire community!


Save all the foster kids in an entire community!

Open your heart and help a foster child

Open your heart and give as much as you can to help foster children who need you.

They have no one else.

Please donate now!

Email to take part in this rewarding initiative - it will be fun & easy!

We greatly appreciate the generous support from:

Gilt Groupe
EnterpriseDB NuoDB
And a special thank you to all of our private donors!


What is the ultimate goal of this program?

To improve the world at a grand-scale by increasing the productivity of the next generation

What inspired the Techie Youth initiative?

The motivation was derived from observing other people's random acts of selfless kindness

Who is eligible to enroll in the Techie Youth program?

Any youth who is in foster-care or who has recently aged-out is eligible. We also accept all youth who have genuine dire-need to establish a life-changing career in tech; many of our students are homeless-youth, underage single-mothers, transgendered or LGBQ, in juvenile justice "2nd chance" programs, etc. Applicants must be old enough to be legally-employed.

How can youth get enrolled into Techie Youth? Sign up online right now!

What do students receive upon completion of the Techie Youth program?

Graduates of Techie Youth receive a certificate of completion in the form of a diploma-plaque, and assisted IT-career placement through priority interviewing opportunities that are exclusive for Techie Youth graduates.

Thanks to our generous donors, graduates in some Techie Youth locations are rewarded with premium tickets to sporting events and a free laptop.

Who are the kids in foster care?

Most are just regular kids who were born into an irregular environment of severe abuse and/or neglect.

The video on the left is just a sample of the 100,000+ kids in the US foster care system.

Are foster care kids juvenile-delinquents who cause crime?

No, kids who commit crimes are typically in the care of their state's juvenile detention system; children in the foster care system are innocent victims of their parent's irresponsible actions.

Youths who spend all or most of their adolescence in the foster care system often end up following negative-influences that lead them to commit criminal actions, but they did not start out this way and the Techie Youth program is designed to prevent that from happening years before they succumb to it.

What will happen to kids who don't enter the Techie Youth program and age-out of foster care?

  • - Within 1 year nearly HALF of the girls will become pregnant
  • - Within 2 years 1 in 4 will be incarcerated
  • - 1 in 5 will become homeless

What does the Techie Youth program look like?

High Tech Classroom
High-tech classrooms motivate youth
Modern Classroom
Classes are fun & engaging
Hands-On Curriculum
Hands-on curriculum
Individualized Student Aattention
Multiple trainers provide individual attention
Harkness Method
Superb Education

Implementing strategies learned from New York's most-prestigious private schools, like the Harkness discussion-based teaching method

Alienware Gaming Room

After-class benefits include free lunch, playing in the Alienware gaming room and jamming at Rock Band on Xbox One


Eric David Benari

Eric David Benari

Founder & President
Tanuja Prasad

Tanuja Prasad

Jem Pagan

Jem Pagan

Carl McCarthy

Carl McCarthy

Mark Herschberg

Mark Herschberg

Jeremy Christopher Kohomban, Ph.D.

Jeremy Christopher Kohomban

Advisory Board
President & CEO of The Children's Village
Christy Obie-Barrett

Christy Obie-Barrett

Advisory Board
Executive Director of A Family For Every Child
Mark Mathias

Mark Mathias

Advisory Board
CIO at Appen
Eric David Benari

Eric David Benari, PMP

Eric David Benari, Founder & President of Techie Youth, is an IT business expert and master-technologist who has founded and/or built the infrastructure for a large portfolio of ventures, spanning sectors of social networks, e-commerce, B2B, open-source, online advertising (while in a senior-role at Yahoo!) and others.

He has been invited to speak at numerous conferences and universities, including NYU and MIT, and is a published writer for, MIT CIO Corner & other journals.

Eric is also organizer of the world's largest community of database-technology professionals and chairman/coordinator of the biannual Database Month festival in New York City.

Tanuja Prasad

Tanuja Prasad

Tanuja Prasad, Director of Techie Youth, has 20+ years experience in information technology and financial services technology management. She also brings a keen interest and experience in social impact enterprises. She has had roles as CTO of a nonprofit providing after-school services, and, as CTO/co-founder of a nonprofit that sought to create a marketplace for finding and funding grants. She is currently involved in applying technology solutions to the challenge of social impact measurement.

As an Electrical Engineer herself, Tanuja has a special focus on women in the STEM disciplines. She has coached young women in technology, appeared as judge for various competitions and mentored projects for the Technovation Challenge.

She sees education as a necessary tool for a sustainable career path, and believes that the time is right for innovative education solutions. The technology sector, in particular, is not just growing but also morphing in response to changing economic and technology landscapes, and is therefore ripe with opportunities.

Jem Pagan

Jem Pagan

Jem Pagan, Director of Techie Youth, is currently the Director of Technology Strategy for JNK Securities, a research and trading firm for institutional investment organizations in the greater New York City, Boston, San Francisco and Toronto regions.

Jem has been fortunate to benefit at an early age from programs designed to support and help children in the Foster Care system. He and his three siblings found themselves in a situation without parental care for almost 3 weeks. After being placed in the foster care system (in upstate New York), he experienced many of the challenges that young people experience today.

Programs that were geared towards at-risk youth provided a bridge to acquire 'employable' skill sets were critical in his development as a teen and young adult. His introduction to technology was provided by the Program for Rochester to Interest Students in Science and Math (PRISM). His interaction with STEM professionals and summer internships provided by PRISM was life changing impact. Jem attributes programs like Techie Youth as critical in redirecting young people towards positive life outcomes both professionally and emotionally.

In his role at JNK Securities, Jem manages the firm's strategic thought leadership program and research of emerging technologies, technology innovation and future disruptions in the IT, telecom, digital media and alternative energy industries.

Jem recently served as the Director of Business Transformation Services for Oracle America. He managed the North American territory as a senior level strategic consultant, providing business and technology strategies and solutions that encompassed all verticals and market segments including Big Data/Analytics, Healthcare, Cloud Computing, Cyber Security, Claims Processing, Mobile Technology, etc. for the executive leadership level within the Oracle customer base.

Prior to joining Oracle, Jem served as Senior Vice President (CTO) of Product Development and Systems Operations and as General Manager of the mid-Atlantic Region at Mzinga, Inc. In this role, Jem led the design and deployment of Mzinga's next generation SaaS and Cloud Strategy for their Global Learning and Social Media Products and services and provided mission critical learning and certification.

Jem is the first Chief Enterprise Architect and Chief Information Security Officer simultaneously for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania's Office for Information Technology, and provided enterprise solutions, standards and business strategy for 52 Agencies, Boards and Commissions under the Governor's jurisdiction with an annual recurring IT budget of $2B.

Under Jem's leadership, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania received the International Laureate Award for Excellence in Government for the Implementation of the Business Solutions Center of Excellence, a thought leadership think tank developed to advance technology in government operations. The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania also received the National Award for Excellence in Government from NASCIO (National Association for State CIOs) for their Initiative called, Operation Secure Enterprise, an effort architected and spearheaded by Jem to address cyber-security needs in government operations. Jem also served on the Federal Inter-Agency Advisory Board for smartcard standards. This effort was led by the Department of Homeland Security under the Presidential Directive - FIPS 201 that called for the creation of ISO specification standards in Identity Management and Smartcard Technology.

As Chief Network Officer for Maryland State Department of Public Safety, Probation and Corrections, Jem's organization managed the statewide criminal justice network and data center operations that provided support for all criminal agency organizations (i.e., Courts, Law Enforcement, FBI/NCIC, Attorney General's office, etc.). Jem also served on the Governor's Network Maryland thought leadership team formulated to architect business and technology solutions for telecommunications, data communications cyber security and broadband networking.

Carl McCarthy

Carl McCarthy

Carl McCarthy, Director of Techie Youth, is a practicing attorney and insurance company executive. He has advised not-for-profit entities and has served on the Board of Directors of the Guild Food Stamp Clinic, an organization that advocates for food stamp recipients.

Mark Herschberg

Mark Herschberg

Mark Herschberg, Director of Techie Youth, CTO of Madison Logic, MIT Instructor, Educated at MIT with degrees in physics, EE/CS, and a masters in cryptography.

Mark has spent his career launching and fixing new ventures at startups, Fortune 500s, and academia. Mark has worked at and consulted to number startups typically taking on roles in general management, operations, and technology. He has been involved from inception and fundraising through growth and sale of the company. These startup companies have included a wireless application platform, online advertising, lead generation, OLAP, media, entertainment, and new language development. Mark was instrumental in launching Sears online home services labor market; he also helped fix NBCs online video marketplace (now

In academia Mark spent a year at Harvard Business School working with two finance professors to create the upTick system now used to teach finance at many of the top business schools.

At MIT Mark helped to start the Undergraduate Practice Opportunities Program at which he teaches annually along with his teaching at the SUNY Levin Institute.

Jeremy Christopher Kohomban, Ph.D.

Jeremy Christopher Kohomban, Ph.D.

Dr. Kohomban, Techie Youth Advisory Board Member, is the President and CEO of The Children's Village, The Institute's Center for Child Welfare Research at the Children's Village Institute, and the President of Harlem Dowling. The Children's Village and Harlem Dowling provide a broad continuum of programs including evidence-based support for families, shelters for homeless youth and immigrant children, alternatives to incarceration, non-secure detention, adoption and foster care services, alternative schools, affordable housing, and specialized services for nearly 20,000 children and families annually. The Children's Village is the 2013 Gold Award Winner of the New York Community Trust-New York Magazine Nonprofit Excellence Awards for overall Management Excellence.

Dr. Kohomban is a noted expert in child welfare and his leadership successes have been noted by The New York Times, NPR and other publications. In their story discussing the child welfare crisis in New York, City Limits magazine identified Dr. Kohomban as a leader with a "clear vision for the future." In his book, From Pariahs to Partners, How Parents and their Allies Changed New York City's Child Welfare System, author David Tobis describes him as "one of the most parent-focused, reform-minded, and effective administrators in the field of child welfare". In 2013 Dr. Kohomban was honored by the Child Welfare League of America for Exemplary Innovative Service Resulting in Positive and Successful Outcomes for Children and in 2011 by the Alliance for Children and Families with the Samuel Gerson Nordlinger Child Welfare Leadership Award for his dedication and effectiveness in the child welfare field.

Dr. Kohomban currently serves on the boards of the Child Welfare Watch, Child Welfare Organizing Project, The Alliance for Children and Families, Annie E. Casey Foundation's Center for Effective Family Services and Systems, and Council of Family and Child Caring Agencies (COFCCA), the Washington D.C. based American Youth Work Center which publishes the periodical Youth Today, and Charity Navigator's Advisory Panel. He has earned a reputation as a leader who effectively blends human services with accountability and a pragmatic business sense. Dr. Kohomban is the author of a number of articles and a nationally recognized speaker on topics of organizational leadership, system reform, and family-focused service delivery.

Dr. Kohomban is a vocal advocate for juvenile justice and child welfare reform. He provided expert testimony to the Governor's Juvenile Justice Task Force which, together with support from The Vera Institute of Justice, produced a blueprint for juvenile justice reform in New York State. He is a member of the Westchester County Department of Social Services' Advisory Council, NYC's Division for Youth and Family Justice Advisory Board, and co-chair of the New York State Strategic Plan Action Committee Local Continuum and Coordination Structure on Juvenile Justice. Dr. Kohomban received his undergraduate degree from Teacher's College in Kansas, his Masters from Long Island University in New York and his Ph.D. from the School for Leadership in Virginia.

Mark Mathias

Mark Mathias

Mark Mathias, Techie Youth Advisory Board Member, President of the New York CTO Club, Board Member of the Westport Board of Education, Chief Information Officer at Appen, Founder and Co-Chair of the Westport Mini Maker Faire - a youth-oriented STEM event attracting 10,000 attendees annually.

Christy Obie-Barrett

Christy Obie-Barrett

Christy Obie-Barrett, Techie Youth Advisory Board Member, Executive Director of A Family For Every Child, President-Elect of the Heart Gallery of America for the 2010-2012 term.

Christy is the founder and Executive Director of the Oregon-based 501(c)(3) agency she started in 2006, A Family For Every Child/Heart Gallery. The Heart Gallery was AFFEC's first program. AFFEC has now grown to include ten different programs intended to support foster children and find forever families nationwide. Programs range from foster parent support groups to an excellent Mentor Program to Family Finding Program services that search for relatives who may have cared for a child in the past.

Christy's cause has now become the cause of 15 employees and close to 900 volunteers in AFFEC's database.

Christy is the mother of 12 children, 9 of whom are adopted.


Techie Youth is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit charitable organization in New York, with a goal for nationwide program-adoption

Copyright © 2019 Techie Youth, a 501(c)3 non-profit charitable organization in NYC