Unleashing Limitless Potential
Yesterday, Civicorps Corpsmembers, alumni, staff, and community partners conducted a meeting at the Oakland offices of Congresswoman Barbara Lee. We were thrilled to help represent constituents of California’s 13th congressional district in legislative advocacy with the Reconnecting Youth Campaign. The RYC is a collaborative national campaign calling on Congress to invest in America’s future by funding 1 million pathways to education, training, national service and employment opportunities for youth ages 16-24 who are neither working nor in school.
We met with Congresswoman Barbara Lee’s District Director, Press Secretary and a Congressional Aide, and shared information about the opportunities Civicorps creates for youth. Corpsmembers and alumni shared their personal journeys of success and the benefits of programs like Civicorps.
For over 35 years, Civicorps has provided vital services to disconnected youth, by re-engaging young adults to earn their high school diploma, gain job skills, pursue college and embark on family sustaining careers.
One startling statistic we shared with the Congresswoman’s staff: in our Congressional district, 7,096 Opportunity Youth have been separated from pathways to productive adulthood. These young people seek opportunities to provide for themselves and their families, and their talents offer an untapped opportunity to contribute to our community and economy. Even more staggering to note: nationally, 4.6 million youth lack these pathways to success, and federal funding only reached about 350,000 youth in 2017-18.
Existing programs like Civicorps address the multiple barriers faced by Opportunity Youth and offer unique approaches and program models to reconnect them with education, job training skills and employment opportunities.
We’re grateful for Congresswoman Barbara Lee’s longstanding leadership on behalf of the youth of Oakland and Alameda County. We’re delighted to be able to participate in the Reconnecting Youth Campaign, calling for increased funding for existing programs with demonstrated success.
The RYC interviewed our Corpsmembers for a forthcoming video about Opportunity Youth in this congressional district. This video of alumni Samantha Vitti and Bethany Rivard (now a Civicorps staff member) is an example of more to come.