Latin American Youth Center YouthBuild Public Charter School
WISH LIST: $100: steel-toed work boots for two YouthBuild students; $250: Life Skills assessment for 15 students; $1000: First Aid, CPR, and safety training for 10 students
A small, alternative school, YouthBuild PCS offers 16-24 year-olds who have dropped out, aged out, or been expelled from traditional high schools, a unique second chance. In an intimate, supportive environment students can take classes in English or Spanish, earn a GED diploma, acquire the skills to be successful in college or the workplace, and navigate the transition to adulthood. And this is no mean feat. 100% are low-income; more than a third are parents themselves; another third speak little or no English, and most begin with extremely low math and reading levels – often the reasons that they dropped out in the first place. Students alternate between the classroom (reading, science, math; job-readiness and life skills), a construction site (building affordable housing units), and service learning opportunities (creating community gardens and cleaning up local rivers). So building means many things: building knowledge, character, homes, lives. Young people who often feel that they have nothing to offer leave YouthBuild PCS with a different perspective: “I built that,” they say. They have built even more.