About Success 1st


Mission Statement

Success 1st works to educate, encourage and equip youths to achieve positive outcomes by making healthy decisions. 


Youth will have the tools they need to make sound decisions, thrive in a multigenerational society and be successful, contributing citizens.​

Who We Are

Success 1st (Success First) is a 501c3 nonprofit corporation dedicated to empowering youth to share their ideas, goals, and experiences while encouraging peers to do the same. Through workshops, volunteerism and artistic experiences, Success 1st helps youth develop the tools necessary to make sound decisions and focus on opportunities.

Success 1st seeks to ensure that youth realize the advantages of making their goals of success their primary focus. The emphasis on their future opportunities helps youth to resist destructive behaviors. Success 1st also charges youth with taking center stage, directing and leading. With the help of mentors and supporters in the community, youth deliver key messages to their peers. Furthermore, youth are encouraged to recognize their innate talents, develop their skills through practice, list their goals and begin preparing for future success today. It is structured to engage youth in artistic endeavors, strategic thinking/planning, and character-building activities as a means to discourage at-risk behavior which can include violence, drug, alcohol, intimate relations and acts of aggression.

Our Founder

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Sharnice Jones'  inquisitive nature led to the founding of "Success 1st" a 501c3 non-profit organization.  She developed the idea in 2012 during her senior year of high school. Things began to take shape after Miss Jones decided to interview a young woman living with HIV for a high school essay competition in her junior year of 2011.  Sharnice won top honor for the essay entitled "Success Before Sex" which was published in book format the next year. What began as an essay written to inform her peers of the risks of contracting the disease, expanded into a concerted effort to encourage as many youth as possible of the importance of setting goals and creating a plan to reach them.

Deciding to donate profits from the sale of the book to charity,  Sharnice began describing her vision for a youth organization, "Success 1st" is the result. Her strategy of using a peer-to-peer engagement model to deliver key messages designed to reduce at risk behaviors proves to be successful as youth and adult involvement increases.