Hundreds of teenagers and adult activists marched from Boston Common to the State House Thursday, calling on lawmakers to provide $15 million for youth jobs and further measures to cut down on prison time for young offenders.

The group We Have A Future is asking the state to spend more on jobs programs for teens, which organizers say is the best way to keep young people from becoming involved in crime. They're also demanding that state leaders provide more funding for public schools to bridge the achievement gap, an issue Beacon Hill failed to deal with last session.

Rep. Ayanna Pressley urged young Bostonians to stay active in political organizing efforts, like the one pushing for an additional $15 million for the Youth Works jobs program.

"I wanted to be here to celebrate you, to lift you up, to encourage you. You are not the future, you are the present," Pressley said.

Pressley told the crowd gathered at the Parkman Bandstand that young voters will make a difference in the 2020 elections.

"You all could have been anywhere else today, doing anything, so for those that think our youth are apathetic, here's the response," Pressley said to loud cheers.

Juvenile justice reformers are also keeping up pressure on officials in charge of implementing last year's justice overhaul law, which is set to write new standards for youthful offenders this year.

The group of nearly 300 young people marched to the State House to hear from Suffolk District Attorney Rachel Rollins, who supports continuing to increase the age of jurisdiction for the juvenile justice system.