Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis has announced the award of
approximately $114 million to 183 community groups to provide education
and training to young people across the United States. This amount is
an initial increment for two years of grant operations. A remaining
increment may be awarded pending the availability of additional
funding. Among today's awardees, 62 are current Department of Labor
YouthBuild grantees, and 121 are new to the department. The YouthBuild
program assists out-of-school youth in obtaining their diplomas or GEDs while providing occupational training in the construction industry.
While acquiring leadership skills and participating in community service, at-risk youth build and renovate affordable housing within their communities. The awards include approximately $47 million allocated to the YouthBuild program under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.
"President Obama and I are delighted to be able to increase funding for this promising program, which does so much for youth and their communities," said Secretary Solis. "The YouthBuild program not only assists young people in obtaining education and skills, but also gives them a sense of accomplishment and empowers them as they give back to their communities."
The Labor Department also plans to initiate a rigorous randomized control trial evaluation of the YouthBuild program to learn more about its impact on the disadvantaged youth it serves.
Participants in YouthBuild programs include individuals who have been in the juvenile justice system, youth aging out of foster care, high school dropouts and others. In addition to receiving academic and occupational skills training, these young people develop leadership skills and participate in community service opportunities. Many YouthBuild participants are learning "green" building techniques, assisting with retrofitting existing homes, and discovering how to help make their communities sustainable and environmentally friendly.
Organizations chosen for YouthBuild funding include workforce investment boards, faith-based and community groups, and local and nonprofit housing development agencies. The YouthBuild program was transferred by Congress from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to the U.S. Department of Labor in 2006. Today's announcement brings to 228 the total number of YouthBuild projects funded by the department.
La Fe Community Development Corporation in El Paso - $687,500
Walker Montgomery Development Corporation in New Waverly - $570,131
San Antonio Youth Centers in San Antonio - $687,500