Oakland Leaf’s programs interweave five core components that correlate to the challenges and opportunities faced by the community. Rather than focusing solely on one aspect of enrichment, such as improving academic scores, we take a holistic approach—offering participants a broad range of activities that foster curiosity and insight about themselves and their community. We challenge students and their families to strive for what they want to achieve for themselves while creating the change they want to see in the community.




STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math)

The goal of Oakland Leaf’s STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) initiative is to ensure that students and families are digitally literate, have access to modern technology, and are encouraged to pursue interests in the scientific fields. Today, students spend 1/3 less time in science class than they did a decade ago. Yet, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the ...  STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math)


Standardized test scores in Oakland are lower than in other state and county averages. There are also large disparities by race and ethnicity. 87% of Anglo-American elementary students in the Oakland Unified School District (OUSD) scored proficient or above in reading compared to 39% of Latino students and 41% of African American students. At Oakland Leaf we strongly believe that if, ...  Literacy

Art and Culture

Oakland Leaf continues to uphold the founders’ goal of art and youth-led productions that celebrate the beauty and talent that often gets marginalized when one thinks about, talks about, or represents Oakland. Art and culture are woven throughout all of Oakland Leaf’s programs and classes. We provide our youth with a number of opportunities to present and share their achievements ...  Art and Culture

Health and Wellness

A healthy community begins with individuals with healthy minds, bodies, and spirits. Oakland Leaf is working to improve the livelihood, health, and vitality of East Oakland’s communities. Recent studies have found that the average child spends 35 hours a week in front of the television. Less than 25% of school-aged children participate in daily physical activity and only 34% of those ...  Health and Wellness

Leadership and Empowerment

Self-reported rates of gang involvement are higher for Oakland youth compared to county and state averages for students in 7th, 9th, and 11th grades. Approximately, 40% of all homicides in Oakland in 2008 were directly gang-related. Child poverty in Oakland has increased more than 30% in three years, from 25% of youth in poverty in 2007 to 33% in 2010. Oakland Leaf cultivates leadership ...  Leadership and Empowerment

Studies show increased years of arts courses yield higher SAT verbal and math scores.