October 12, 2017

Hartford re-engages youth in paid community service

The Hartford Youth Service Corps kicked off its second year of helping youth participate in paid community service projects Thursday, city and corps leaders and partners said.

This year, Mayor Luke Bronin raised $2.5 million for the YSC. Funders include: Barbara Dalio and the Dalio Foundation, the Travelers Foundation, the Newman's Own Foundation, United Technologies Corporation, The Hartford, the Aetna Foundation, and Key Bank, he said.

"Creating the Hartford Youth Service Corps was a personal priority for me from day one, and through the Youth Service Corps we've been able to give more than 200 young people the chance to earn a paycheck, contribute to their community, and put themselves on a path to education or employment, no matter what mistakes they've made in the past," said Bronin.

Last year, youths in the program put in 85,000 hours of paid work, including shoveling snow for seniors, cleaning up Hartford's parks and supporting nonprofits. Our Piece of the Pie is running the program for the city.

The YSC creates a part-time, year-round employment opportunity for young people ages 16 to 24. It is designed to give structure, coaching, and work experience to young people who face involvement with the criminal justice system, chronic absenteeism or failure to obtain a high school diploma.

YSC is "helping participants build necessary skills for full-time employment," said Erin Haberman, senior program officer of the Travelers Foundation.

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