Headshot of Ashley Rodriguez Lantigua

Ashley Rodriguez Lantigua

Interim Special Projects Coordinator



Soy una orgullosa inmigrante, with Caribbean roots in the Dominican Republic. I started my journey at YIA as a youth at the age of 13 when I served in the student steering committee for the co-creation of 360 high school. I graduated from Classical High school and YIA in 2019. Since then, I have grown in my leadership efforts contributing to many paradigm shifts in the realms of Language Justice, Outdoor Equity, and dismantling School to Prison Pipelines. My time at YIA as a youth was transformative in that it moved me to recognize the power I behold as a young woman with civic responsibility and autonomy. It deeply informed my undergraduate journey at College of the Holy Cross where my studies were rooted in interdisciplinary praxis. I studied abroad in Ecuador where I was introduced to parallel community efforts to that of YIA, but expanded in rooting in spiritual self-knowledge, deep spiritual ecology and sacred ancestral remembering. The many experiences I’ve been privileged to have move me everyday to continue to challenge and decolonize oppressive structures of knowledge, and to create new cycles of intergenerational healing and being in my communities. 

One of my greatest passions is the praxis of reimagining education, community organizing and activism through embodied remembering. I am a certified Kundalini and Hatha yoga teacher, and the yogic tools and philosophy serve my work and my communities as a sacred anchor to honor the body as a space of reclamation, memory, and revolution. In the fall, I will begin my graduate studies at Harvard Divinity School where I will continue to expand my own theologies and root in the sacred spiritual practices of my foremothers. I intend to actively align my thoughts, actions, and values with both local and global freedom movements as I know that our liberation is interconnected. 

I love to dance (especially Anthony Santos’ old bachata songs), deeply laugh with my sisters, write and travel the world. I feel most at home by the ocean or the mountains.

Matorma in red and smiling at the camera

Matorma Howard

Program Co-Co

Nyrell with a big smile and bright red sweatshirt

Nyrell Wright

Recreational Co-Co



Hey, I’m Nyrell. Im a student at E-cubed Academy , class of 2025. I’m the Recreational CoCo.  My favorite thing about my job is getting the opportunity to meet new people and have new experiences. YIA is a cool place because you meet people different from you and learn new things. I really like to play sports and competing.

Carlos with a calm face and great curly hair

Carlos Olivio

Program Co-Co

Headshot of Stephanie Nunes

Stephanie Nunes

Deputy Director



Stephanie Nunes, M.S.W, born in Cape Verde and raised in Pawtucket, RI, had a long desire to work within the communities she grew up in. After graduating from Shea High School, she attended Providence College where she received her Bachelor’s of Social Work degree. While at PC, Stephanie helped launch the EXPLORE! Program, a college access program for local ninth and tenth graders and continued the work as an AmeriCorps VISTA. In 2012, Stephanie moved to St. Louis, MO to pursue her Master’s of Social Work degree at the Brown School of Social Work at Washington University in St. Louis. Stephanie lived in St. Louis for six and half years starting her career at the United Way of Greater St. Louis in the Community Response Department then as Program Development Manager at Big Brothers Big Sisters of Eastern Missouri, helping launch their work with high school students in the Metro St. Louis Area. When returning back to RI, Stephanie was excited for the opportunity to work at Youth In Action. The role, mission and day-to-day work aligned perfectly with the goals she set out for herself. 

In the years that she has been with YIA, Stephanie has supported the agency through staff transitions, COVID programming, and growing the agency to where it is today, while continuing to ensure the agency stays true to its values of intergenerational leadership and the foundations laid by YIA alumni.

“YIA is the first agency that I have felt that I can bring my whole self. The ability to develop professionally was fueled by the safety that I felt being in a BIPOC and intergenerationally-led agency.” – Stephanie

Christie in glasses smiling slightly

Christie Sainterlien

Restorative Justice Co-Co



Hi I’m Christie🤭 I’m from Haiti and I’m a high school student, class of 2024. I like braiding, I like watching criminal documentary shows, and I love swimming but I don’t know how to. I love documenting my life through photos and videos I love my family and friends. I would say people describe as calm cool collected and smart.

Philina smiling in long braids with pink accents

Philina Bueh

Program Co-Co


Hiii!! My name is Philina Bueh I use they/she pronouns and I am a Junior at Classical High School. I was born and raised here in Providence, Rhode Island and during my free time I enjoy journaling, going to the park, reading, and listening to music. I also love spending time with my friends by watching movies, playing games, and talking/catching up. Listening, observing, leadership, adaptability and emotional intelligence are some of the qualities I like to think I have.

Joseph in a varsity jacket, smiling

Joseph Dasilveira

Program Co-Co


I’m an upcoming content creator and entrepreneur.

  • I like basketball, boxing, and exercise!
  • E-cubed 🎓2024, CCRI Accelerate Student!
  • Goal is to be a better person.
  • I don’t have any talents, but I can make music with a pencil…
Jeremiah smiling big

Jeremiah Olubowale

Development Co-Co

Hi! My name is Jeremiah (Jer-uh-my-ah),  and I was born and raised in Rhode Island, although my parents were born and raised in Nigeria. My pronouns are he/they and I’m a 15-year-old sophomore at Choate Rosemary Hall, a boarding school in Connecticut. Although I do not currently go to school in RI, I have in the past, and growing up here has allowed me to have a better understanding of my community.
I’m currently working as a summer co-coordinator and I’m so excited to help facilitate events for organizations such as the Youth Leadership Institute and help promote TreesPVD.