¡YouthWorks! in Line for Verde Fund Grant

¡YouthWorks! is one of a dozen entities poised to receive grant money from what elected city leaders have designated as the Verde Fund, an initiative by Mayor Javier Gonzales to combat climate change and reduce poverty.

¡YouthWorks! is part of a collaborative group working to bring positive change to our community, connecting local young people to the economy while helping vulnerable families address hunger, save money, build resiliency, and prepare Santa Fe for the impact of climate change.

Click here to read more about this initiative.

The Santa Fe Reporter Cites Our Work

The Santa Fe Reporter says ¡YouthWorks! keeps hope lit in a darkening world, offering critical support to thousands of teens and young adults in the Northern New Mexico area.

Read the full article here.

MAKE Santa Fe Class in Full Swing

Thanks to a collaborative team effort with MAKE Santa Fe, the ¡Youthworks! digital fabrication class is in full swing. Participants are developing trade skills as they learn to use tools in wood shop, metal shop, laser cutting, and 3D printing.

Ginger Richardson, MAKE Santa Fe’s founder, identified the perfect teacher for the class—employee Randy Castillo.

Randy was previously a children’s minister and had experience working with students from diverse backgrounds. Randy says he has a soft spot in his heart for students from tough backgrounds because he’s been there himself and knows that, with a little help, anyone can succeed.

The students work with Randy four days a week for about four hours a day. They participate in “open projects,” which means the students decide themselves what they want to do.


¡YouthWorks! students learn how to weld at MAKE Santa Fe.

According to Randy, once they complete the class, the ¡Youthworks! students will have an edge in the field since they’re both learning to work with different kinds of tools and learning the in’s and out’s of the trade.

Randy says if his students choose to continue down this career path, they will be some of the most well-rounded workers out there. Already some students have sold pieces they’ve made, sometimes in collaboration with one another.


¡YouthWorks! students explore the world of digital printing at MAKE Santa Fe.

In an open project, the students must plan the project start to finish—proposing ideas, logistically planning the project, accounting for any hiccups along the way, and finishing the projects they start.

Randy lets the students know that, as a maker, failure happens, and it’s normal. To emphasize that fact, the class keeps a “failure box” so they can track their mistakes and learn from them. As Randy notes, seeing how to turn failure into success is a lesson that applies to the students’ lives outside of the workshop.

¡YouthWorks! students learn glass craft at MAKE Santa Fe.
¡YouthWorks! student learns the art of glass-making at MAKE Santa Fe.

Randy says the community has been wonderfully responsive to his students. Members of the community have given lessons in the various trades and taken time out of their jobs to let the kids experience firsthand what goes on in their work environments. Students have taken field trips to Liquid Light Glass and visited the Chamber of Commerce Job Fair, giving them exposure to various aspects of the field.


¡YouthWorks! students learn welding techniques at MAKE Santa Fe.

To learn more about MAKE Santa Fe, head to their website, where you can learn about membership prices, classes, and information about the business.

You can also head down to 2879 All Trades Road here in Santa Fe anytime Wednesday through Sunday from 12 noon to 8 pm and see for yourself what’s going on.

Stay tuned for news about an art show featuring some of the work from this class. Details will be posted here on the ¡YouthWorks! website.

Klean Cut Kenny Works His Magic

Kenny Tapia, a.k.a. Klean Cut Kenny, stopped by ¡YouthWorks! again this afternoon to spruce up our young people with fresh, new haircuts.

Kenny first began cutting hair at ¡YouthWorks! as part of a community service commitment, but he had such a good time getting to know the students and hearing their stories, he kept coming back. He says it’s great seeing how excited the young people get when he makes them look fabulous.

Kenny Tapia, a.k.a. Klean Cut Kenny, gives free haircuts at ¡YouthWorks!

Kenny got his start in the haircutting business when he was only in high school. He had a natural talent and plenty of business giving haircuts to his friends. After years of taking clients in his garage—sometimes late at night, to his mother’s dismay—he got his barber’s license in 2015.

If you’d like to check out Klean Cut Kenny’s talent for yourself, you can find him during regular business hours at Suite 404A, 3600 Cerrillos Road, Santa Fe.

Melynn Schuyler Selected as Panelist

Melynn Schuyler, the executive director of ¡YouthWorks!, has been selected to share her expertise on a panel of local nonprofit leaders to address the findings of a 2016 survey of 300 nonprofits from across the state.

The panel will discuss how the survey findings reflect the struggles and successes of their organizations and how they develop and sustain partnerships to achieve positive outcomes for children, families, and communities across New Mexico.

The session is free of charge and will be held at the Santa Fe Community Foundation on Wednesday, May 3, 2017, from 3 – 4:30 pm.

For more details or to register for this session, visit the Santa Fe Community Foundation website.

Youth Conservation Corps Begins Work

The !YouthWorks¡ Youth Conservation Corps is partnering with the City of Santa Fe and the Wildfire Network this summer to deliver public beautification and restoration projects. Classes started with an outdoor session on April 24 led by Wildfire Network Trainer Krys Nystrom.

The !YouthWorks¡ Conservation Corps attends class in an outdoor setting.

The crews are already at work at the Santa Fe Institute Tesuque campus, where they hiked the trails to identify trees that need to be thinned. The thinning will control erosion in the area to reduce the risk of wildfire.

The !YouthWorks¡ Youth Conservation Corps identifies threes for thinning.

This training allows the young people to work toward Basic Firefighter certification, a step on the path to a high-paying career.

As part of the project, the young people will also be engaged in GED coursework at !YouthWorks¡ where they will also have access to free counseling and case management services.

New Mexican Cites Shelter Now! Success

This weekend’s New Mexican featured the success of Shelter Now, a project launched in late December to host homeless young adults in Santa Fe during the cold winter months.

¡YouthWorks! and its partners—the Adelante program at Santa Fe Public Schools, the Youth Shelters’ Street Outreach and Transitional Living Program, and the Santa Fe Community Foundation’s Birth to Career Collaborative—initiated Shelter Now with a $50,000 grant from the Kind World Foundation, along with matching funds from the Santa Fe community.

Read all about the success of this project in this weekend’s edition of the Santa Fe New Mexican.

Part-Time Positions Available!

¡YouthWorks! river restoration crew installs a bridge across the Santa Fe River.

Santa Fe ¡YouthWorks! is currently accepting applications for eight positions with the Youth Conservation Corps and ¡YouthWorks! River Restoration Crew.

Participants in this program learn new skills, help protect the environment, and earn a paycheck too!

Interested candidates should call 505-989-1855 or stop by Santa Fe ¡YouthWorks! at1504 Cerrillos Road to fill out an application.

¡YouthWorks! Benefit Set for March 12

Join us for dinner and music at a benefit for ¡YouthWorks! on March 12 at Boxcar Bar & Grill, 530 South Guadalupe Street.

No cover charge—donations requested to help support education and job training for “at-risk” youth in Santa Fe.

Come for the food, come for the music, and come to hear from Kate Noble, newly elected Santa Fe Public Schools board member, why organizations like ¡YouthWorks! are vital to the Santa Fe community.

Boxcar Bar & Grill hosts a benefit for !YouthWorks! to honor their work in the Santa Fe Community.

¡YouthWorks! Benefit at Fire & Hops

On Wednesday, March 8, local gastropub Fire & Hops welcomes Ska Brewing from Durango for a benefit to help support ¡Youthworks!, a community-based nonprofit that helps local “at-risk” youth get their lives back on track.

Join us at Fire and Hops from 5:00 to 9:30 pm for beer and food specials at 222 North Guadalupe Street in Santa Fe.

Fire & Hops hosts a benefit for ¡YouthWorks! to honor their work in the Santa Fe Community.

A percentage of all proceeds from the evening will benefit ¡YouthWorks! education and job training programs to help “disconnected” youth become engaged and valued members of their communities.

For details about the menu and the special brews, click here.

Digital Fabrication Course Underway

Young people from ¡YouthWorks! do classroom work as part of their internship in digital fabrication.
Young people from ¡YouthWorks! work with a digital laser printer as part of their internship at MAKE Santa Fe.

¡YouthWorks!​ is partnering with MAKE Santa Fe to offer a course in digital fabrication.

MAKE Santa Fe is a local non-profit community workspace where people can access tools, resources and workshops in order to make, repair, invent, or create anything they can dream.

It’s like a gym, but with powerful tools instead of exercise equipment and skilled craftspeople instead of personal trainers.

In this 12-week course, students meet four times a week at the MAKE Santa Fe facility, which is located at 2879 All Trades Road.

Participants learn the basics of computer aided design, computer numerical control, additive and subtractive manufacturing, as well as lab safety.

For more information, contact us at (505) 989-1855.

¡YouthWorks! Visits the Roundhouse

On February 23, more than a dozen members of the ¡YouthWorks! team visited the Roundhouse, as the New Mexico State Capitol is known, to learn about the legislative process and the power of local politics.

A crew from ¡YouthWorks! poses for a photo outside the New Mexico State Capitol..

Hosted by Nina Altamarano and the State Capitol tour staff, the team toured the Roundhouse and met with Senator Carlos Cisneros and with staff from the office of Speaker of the House Brian Egolf.

Thanks to Broad Spectrum Consulting, Lawrence J. Horan Ltd., and SG Consulting Services, the visiting ¡YouthWorks! contingent also had lunch before heading back to the ¡YouthWorks! offices.

Pete Romero Tells His Story

After dropping out of high school in 2014, Pete Romero found ¡YouthWorks! and says it changed his life.

At ¡YouthWorks! Pete really buckled down and took advantage of the programs available to him. He got his GED, earned a certificate in culinary safety, and graduated from the Youthbuild construction training program. After that, Pete was awarded a four-month Littleglobe New Media Fellowship.

Littleglobe, one of the local nonprofits working with ¡YouthWorks!, is a team of professional artists, activists, and facilitators who work to empower under-served individuals and communities.

During his apprenticeship at Littleglobe, Pete created a video to tell his story. Click below to hear that story in Pete’s own words.

If you’d like to participate in our apprenticeship program or simply get more information about it, please call Devin Baldwin, our Workforce Innovation Program Coordinator, at (505) 989-1855 or email him at devin@santafeyouthworks.org.

Your Generosity Launched ShelterNow!

Shelter Now logo.

Thanks to the generosity of our donors, ¡YouthWorks! raised $20,000 in matching funds to secure a $50,000 Kind World Foundation grant to provide shelter for homeless young people in Santa Fe.

Faith Groups Volunteered Facilities

Four faith groups in our community—Temple Beth Shalom, Unitarian Universalist Association, Zia United Methodist Church, and Christ Lutheran Church—have stepped up to volunteer their facilities on a rotating basis to provide shelter each night for young people, ages 18 to 24, who have no other place to go.

A young man arrives to spend the night at Shelter Now!
A young man prepares his sleeping bag for a night indoors at Shelter Now!

The initial funding from the Kind World Foundation will provide staffing for the shelter as well as supplies, including sleeping bags and pads. Congregations at each facility have volunteered to provide the young people with breakfast each day.

Access to Critical Services

Each morning, transportation will be provided from the shelter location to ¡YouthWorks! and the other nonprofit sites involved with ShelterNow! where the youth will be assigned to case managers, have access to services such medical and dental care, and be able to take advantage of the education and job training they need to bring stability to their lives.

And the Roof Came Off!

The roof of the ¡Youthworks! facility on Cerrillos Road had seen better days, so early on the morning of Monday, January 16, a crew of thirty young people braved the cold to remove the existing roof to make way for a new insulated replacement.

The students are all a part of YouthBuild, our construction job training program. They usually work at the Habitat for Humanities work site, so Monday was a chance to work closer to “home.”


The YouthBuild crew removes the old roof from the ¡YouthWorks! building.

The crew shoveled the gravel covering the entire roof into wheel barrows, dumped the gravel off the roof into a dumpster, and then peeled back the tar paper to expose the entire roof.

The YouthBuild crew carts away debris in preparation for installing the new roof.
The YouthBuild crew is hard at work removing the old roof from the ¡YouthWorks! building.

One of the crew demonstrated that his construction training had “taken” when he reminded a staff member who was taking photos of the work: “Always wear a hard hat when you’re working on a roof.”


$50,000 Grant Requires $20,000 Match

The Kind World Foundation, founded by a high-tech entrepreneur who lives part-time in Santa Fe, has offered a grant of $50,000 to fund a pilot program to set up a safe overnight shelter for homeless young adults in Santa Fe.

Beds are needed for homeless youth in Santa Fe.

Young people ages 18 to 24 often fall through the cracks of existing local programs for the homeless, since some local shelters focus on teens under the age of seventeen, others primarily on families, and others on older adults.

The grant will be available only if the nonprofits collaborating on the project can raise $20,000 in matching funds this month.

Matching Funds as of January 17, 2017

  • 100%
Please Help Us Make Our Match

¡YouthWorks! will serve as the umbrella organization for the project, working with the following local nonprofits to tackle youth homelessness in Santa Fe:

  • Santa Fe Public Schools Adelante Program
  • Youth Shelters and Family Services Transitional Living Programs
  • Youth Shelters and Family Services Street Outreach
  • Santa Fe Community Foundation’s Birth to Career Collaborative

¡YouthWorks! Partners with Minute Man

Youth people from ¡YouthWorks! attend a film workshop.

On Saturday, October 22, 2016, ¡YouthWorks! is hosting an Exploration in Film Careers workshop from 2:30 pm – 4:00 pm. The workshop will be held at the ¡YouthWorks! office, located at 1504/1506 Cerrillos Road.

Workshop attendees will gain exposure to various career paths and opportunities in the local film industry.

The workshop is free and open to youth between the ages of 18-24. For more information, please call Devin at (505) 989-1855 or send him an email at devin@santafeyouthworks.org.


Connect with Us

Physical Address
1504 Cerrillos Road
Santa Fe, NM 87505

Mailing Address
1000 Cordova Place #415
Santa Fe, NM 87505

(505) 989-1855

Monday - Friday, 8 am - 5 pm

Email info@santafeyouthworks.org