At DVULI, we believe that by working together, God’s people demonstrate His kingdom here on earth (John 17:21). That value applies heavily to the field of ministry.

Think about it: One ministry is limited in what they can accomplish, but, working together as partners, we have unlimited possibilities. Partners are energized by a common vision. Partners develop and accomplish specific outcomes together, and they bring complementary strengths to the work. Partners make for healthier and more effective ministry.

That’s why interdependence is a core value of the DeVos Urban Leadership Initiative. And, we don’t just preach that value, we live it. Below is a list of organizations that DVULI partners with in an effort to optimize the impact of our initiative and to better serve our participants.

Christian Community Development Association

To inspire, train, and connect Christians who seek to bear witness to the Kingdom of God by reclaiming and restoring under-resourced communities. (

Many of the first instructors and speakers for our initiative, including John Perkins, Bob Lupton, Noel Castellanos, Michael Mata and Mary Nelson, were urban practitioners and former youth leaders affiliated with CCDA. We continue to partner together by encouraging DVULI alumni to attend CCDA trainings and conferences and by supporting the National Student Leadership Intensive geared for student leaders ages 15-19. 

City Life - Youth for Christ USA

Transforming the lives of urban youth, their families and the communities that they live in. (

In 2009, DVULI hosted a uniquely selected training cohort made up entirely of Youth for Christ (YFC) staffers from around the country. The resulting relationships and mutual respect amongst our organizations went beyond anything we originally imagined. Today, that relationship endures, as we continue to partner with YFC to provide training to leaders at the organization’s executive level. Read more about the story of our partnership with YFC here.

Memphis Leadership Foundation 

Equipping and empowering grassroots urban leaders to transform lives and communities in Memphis (

Since 2013, we have partnered with the Memphis Leadership Foundation to offer Transformational Giving, a training curriculum that provides a scriptural approach to donor development, to DVULI alumni who are key fundraisers for their organizations. The program is led by Dr. Larry Lloyd, of Memphis Leadership Foundation.

Urban Youth Workers Institute

Training Leaders, Transforming Youth. (

Since 2003, we have partnered with UYWI and Larry Acosta, Founder and CEO, to produce workshop topics and develop trainers for urban youth worker events. Additionally, we have shared network contacts and resources to promote trainings, and DVULI alumni are encouraged to help coordinate and participate in UYWI events.