The Catalyst Hip-Hop program was founded in 2001 by Joel Stigale, who had seen first-hand, through his involvement in gang intervention, how the negative messages in main-stream hip-hop had influenced youth to embrace violence, drug and alcohol abuse, domestic violence, and crime as a way of life. Thus Catalyst was birthed out of a desire to offer an alternative message of hope and seeks to be a “catalyst” for positive life change and prevention/intervention in the lives of at-risk youth in Miami-Dade County. Catalyst offers youth a safe space to come and develop their talents, as well as to build relationships with mentors and peers.