For nearly two decades, the Para Los Niños Youth Workforce Services (YWS) program (in partnership with the City of Los Angeles’ Economic and Workforce Development Department and LAUSD) has been offering Los Angeles youth ages 16-24 with mental health support, career training, and college preparation to reengage them back to school and the workforce.
“We are proud to serve over 2,000 youth a year to cross barriers to employment,” Jorge Orozco, Para Los Niños Director of YWS, stated at a recent press conference, “We welcome students who dropped out of school (some come into our program with zero credits), need support with catching up with credits to graduate in time, or are out of school and out of work with a high school diploma and not sure what is next for them.”
Recently, Para Los Niños was honored to be awarded $350,000 of federal funding for our YWS Program through Congressman Jimmy Gomez’s Community Funding Project allocation.
“Ever since the pandemic started, there has been so much uncertainty especially for young people…We are grateful for organizations like Para Los Niños doing the invaluable work of uplifting our youth in every way they can,” Congressman Gomez said.
Congressman Gomez’s funding will be used to not only purchase necessary books, materials and course fees for our youth, but will also allow YWS to onboard four additional college & career advisors.
“The impact of something like this is exponential, and will reverberate,” stated Drew Furedi, Para Los Niños President & CEO of the earmark. “It’s one thing to get funding to get materials, but here are additional people who will be there to push, pick you back up, and make sure you are on your path whether that’s to complete your high school requirements to go to college and career pathways. We are so honored to continue this partnership and relationship with Congressman Gomez. We are thrilled by the impact this will have on the youth and communities we serve.”
Expanding upon Furedi’s comments, Orozco added that the additional career advisors will allow more students to be connected to necessary services and support like basic needs and housing support. “All of our youth are matched to a college and career advisor who support them for up to 2 years. The role of these advisors is to ensure they our students have the needed support and eliminate barriers so that they don’t have to worry about housing, food insecurity, early education. And make sure that they are successful.”
PLN believes that relationships are the root of what makes success possible. With our YWS advisors and mentors, youth are personally supported and empowered to be on their path to success.
We are excited to see what the future and the impact of this remarkable funding will bring for our youth and families.
See more coverage of our Press Conference on July 25, 2022 with Congressman Gomez announcing his earmarked funding for Para Los Niños in the links below: