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Youth Development (14-21 Year Olds)

In the REB’s Strategic Plan, strategic goals in four key areas to build the overall quality of our workforce are set forth. One of those is to “Develop 21st Centry Youth Education and Employability Skills” in which we commit to improving and expanding workforce development programs and services for youth, especially older youth who need basic skills development, English language proficiency and employment.

See link to the right called **”Hampden County Youth Indicators Report, March 2009″** for demographic, socio-economic, education and labor market indicators for our region’s 16-24 year olds from 2005-2007 that supports our need to work with youth in these areas!

In order to accomplish that the REB engages community partners in collaborations that will align youth services and result in a more coordinated system of youth development; expands and improves youth work readiness services and internships and works with our One-Stop Career Center services to meet the unique employability needs of out-of-school and unemployed youth. The REB also works with the Career Centers and various generous employers who contribute private funds towards our Center for Youth Internships and Employment which works to develop privately-funded employment and internship opportunities.

Every year the REB launches a Summer Jobs Campaign to augment our publicy-funded summer jobs programs to both increase summer jobs in the private sector as well as raise funds to place more youth, which began on March 25, 2010 this year with an Employer Outreach Breakfast. See pictures to the right from this past summer! See 2010 Employer Donation Form to right to either 1) hire a youth, 2) become a worksite and/or 3) donate funds to support a youth in a community betterment project next summer!

Your nearest Career Center can help you find a job (summer or year-round), an internship, good career information, training, and support services. Here in Hampden County, we take a one-stop service approach to bring you all the information you need in one place. Since 1996, two Career Centers have been providing this excellent level of service.

FutureWorks is a Career Center located at One Federal Street in Springfield. CareerPoint is a Career Center located at 850 High Street in Holyoke. You can find Youth Employment and Training Solutions at either of these locations. These centers are free to use, are funded by the federal and state government, and have staff from other workforce agencies co-located on site to provide a wide range of services.