Democracy is a verb.


Mission & Vision

Mikva Challenge was founded on the premise that youth voice and participation matter, and that our civic and political life will be stronger when youth participate and help shape their own destinies.


Mikva Challenge develops youth to be informed, empowered, and active citizens and community leaders.  We do this by engaging youth in action civics, an authentic and transformative learning process built on youth voice and youth expertise.

Core Values

Our values challenge the status quo.  Traditional schooling emphasizes adult lectures and students as passive learners.

Mikva Challenge adheres to the following core values when implementing our mission:

  • We believe that by providing high quality programming in under-resourced communities and schools, we can eliminate the civic achievement gap.
  • We believe that if youth voice is included in decision-making that policy makers will make more informed decisions.
  • We believe that the best way to learn democracy is to do democracy.
  • We believe action civics is an essential tool to help young people develop the skills, knowledge, and attitudes to be informed, empowered, and active citizens.
  • We believe youth are not apathetic, and that by inviting them into the political process they will become powerful and thoughtful citizens.
  • We believe that Mikva Challenge always needs to be nonpartisan to allow young people to formulate their own opinions and choose the candidates and issues they want to support.

Mikva Challenge envisions a world where:

  • Citizens are informed, empowered, and active
  • Youth voice is valued in decision making
  • Civic leaders reflect the nation’s diversity
  • Action civics is prioritized in education



young people served in the Chicagoland area, California and Washington DC


of Mikva alumni encourage their friends and family to be politically engaged, vs. only 35% of 18-29 yr. olds nationwide


students from 117 schools nationwide presented speeches and/or worked on civic action projects


of Mikva alumni continue to volunteer in their communities, vs. only 36% of 18-29 yr. olds nationwide


Chicagoland teachers participate in Mikva Challenge programs


students campaigned during the 2015-16 Election Season


of Mikva alumni are registered voters, vs. only 53% of 18-29 yr. olds nationwide


Mikva students serve as election judges each election cycle

332 S Michigan Ave
Suite 400
Chicago, IL 60604
(312) 863-6340

Mikva Challenge DC
1220 L St NW, Suite 605
Washington, DC 20005
Action Civics LA
1000 N. Alameda Street
Suite 340
Los Angeles, CA 90012
(213) 346-3248 Send us An Email

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