Combating Youth Poverty Through Jobs Program

In this Solutions of the Day, Nashville borrows a successful jobs program from Boston for youth in poverty to help the struggling demographic.

Combating Youth Poverty Through Jobs Program

In this Solutions of the Day, Nashville borrows a successful jobs program from Boston for youth in poverty to help the struggling demographic.

Many urban neighborhoods face a number of challenges. Among these challenges, income inequality and poverty is especially visible. The problem of youth poverty is even more alarming in cities like Nashville. Youth under 18 in Nashville experience considerably more poverty than the overall population of the city. A whopping 30.5 percent of youth are in poverty. One of the reasons why poverty is persistent among young adults is that there are limited opportunities for young people to improve their job readiness skills.  

In an attempt to address this issue, Nashville is launching a new jobs program that is directed toward the youth. The program connects teenagers and young adults to Nashville employers across various industries. The hope is that teenagers and young adults can acquire “soft-skills,”  which are skills learned through actual work experience, to add to their resumes and pull them out of poverty.

The Nashville youth employment program is based on Boston’s summer jobs program called “Successlink.” Not only does Boston’s program now help about 10,000 youth from low-income families, an evaluation of the program found that youth that are enrolled in the program, are outperforming a control group of youth who did not enroll in the program, by a significant margin. The Mayor of Nashville is hoping that their jobs program is able to be as successful as the Boston summer jobs program. 

Read the full story here (via NextCity)

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Photo by Tanner Boriack / Unsplash

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