Under the direction of Chef Carmen Rodriguez, the YouthWorks culinary team put their skills to work at the Intermountain West Funder Network dinner at Meow Wolf on May 3.
The Funder Network brings together funders who can work alongside each other to strengthen and expand funding and philanthropic leadership in eight western states, including New Mexico.
The menu featured a variety of classic New Mexican dishes hand-made by the YouthWorks culinary team.
Chips with Roasted Salsa, Pico de Gallo & Tomatillo Salsa
Red Chile Camarones Seco Posole
Green Chile Stew
Roasted Beet & Goat Cheese Salad
Apricot Jicama Salad
Tamalito Trio: Green Chile Chicken, Red Chile Pork & Christmas Calabacitas
Tres Hermanas Stuffed Sopapillas
Home-Made Corn Tortillas & Arroz Verde
Stop by the YouthWorks food booth at the Railyard between 11 am and 5 pm on Cinco de Mayo (May 5). We’ll be serving tasty hamburgers, cheeseburgers, veggie burgers, and hot dogs—topped off with Mexican chocolate chip cookies for dessert.
All proceeds will benefit the Youthworks culinary program, which prepares our young people for jobs in the food industry.
Santa Fe’s Verde Community Project made the national online news.
The Daily Yonder quoted YouthWorks staffer Kineret Yardina in coverage of the Verde Community Project as an example of how organizations are tackling the big issues facing small communities.
“More and more, the solutions to our community’s greatest challenges — re-connecting our most vulnerable youth, improving food security, and addressing the unknown effects of what we call climate change — are asking us to work together across sectors, across the city.”Kineret Yardena
For more of the coverage, click here.
Hank Blackwell, former Santa Fe County fire marshal, will lead a training session on April 9, from 9 am to 2 pm, for young people at YouthWorks interested in joining the wildland firefighting crew.
According to Blackwell, “The training will be scientifically sound and put participants ahead ahead of the curve in performing assessments and providing recommendations to residents regarding wildfire and structure ignition.”
For more information, or to sign up, call Devin Baldwin or Kineret Yardena at (505) 989-1855.
At a session titled “Popping Your Bubble with Reality,” fifteen teens from Chile and Argentina, with the group Global Ties, visited YouthWorks on March 27 to hear students report on the school-to-prison pipeline and ways to break that link.
YouthWorks students Amanda and Matt have spent the last two years working on a project focused on this issue, in conjunction with the Museum of International Folk Art (MOIFA).
Their project has focused on identifying problems in U.S. public schools, raising awareness of the problems, and identifying ways schools can do a better job for our youth.
Too often, Matt and Amanda have learned, kids get in trouble at school or get caught in the criminal justice system not because they’re bad—but because they just get lost or they don’t have many good options or they make some bad choices and then they get stuck.
I didn’t get a good education at school. When the classes are full, with lots of kids, you don’t get the help you need.
Some kids face bullying at school or racial discrimination and don’t want to attend. Some kids can’t afford textbooks or have to work or help take care of younger siblings. Others play hooky, break school rules, or hang around with peers who get them into trouble, and then end up in the criminal justice system.
Bullying is a problem. And it’s a big issue in school that kids aren’t given a chance and are just thrown to the side.
At the end of the discussion, Amanda left the Global Ties and YouthWorks audience with some advice:
You are not defined by your past. You always can make better choices. Learn from your past, and it will make you stronger.
Next Step—The Mural
As part of the MOIFA project, earlier in the month, the YouthWorks community had invited guest artist Sam Leyba to work with the youth to paint a mural depicting the issue.
After learning some drawing techniques, the young people drew images about hopeful messages for youth in the future, which Sam put together in preparation for painting the mural on a YouthWorks wall.
On March 27, after the discussion led by Amanda and Matt, YouthWorks students and youth from Chile and Argentina all helped paint the first draft of the mural.
The unveiling of the final artwork will take place on Wednesday, April 18, from 2-4 pm.
YouthWorks will be exhibiting at the 2018 Business Expo on April 5 at the Santa Fe Convention Center.
The exhibit will showcase the programs available for young people at YouthWorks, particularly the culinary arts program led by Chef Carmen Rodriguez.
During the event, young people from YouthWorks will also be exploring career and job opportunities with the other exhibitors.
Help End Hunger
Friday, April 13
6:00 – 8:00 PM
St. Michael’s High School
This year’s annual “Empty Bowl” Dinner at St. Michael’s High School on April 13 will benefit programs for young people at YouthWorks.
Please join us for a simple meal of bread and soup, served from a bowl made by hand by a St. Michael’s High School art student. At the end of the evening, take the empty bowl home with you, as a reminder of those that are less fortunate, those who often have an empty bowl.
To purchase tickets to this event, visit the St. Michael’s website.
As part of the Verde Community Project, young people from YouthWorks are training with Wildfire Network in various aspects of forestry and fire prevention.
The crew has completed projects for the Santa Fe Institute and for local Santa Fe homeowners to reduce fire danger by clearing property of dead and downed wood.
The material they clear is then turned into compost by YouthWorks crews at Reunity Resources and used to grow vegetables for an after-school meal program managed by the Food Depot for disadvantaged elementary school children. Meals for 1400 students per week are prepared by the YouthWorks catering team under the direction of Chef Carmen Rodriguez.
You can support this program by hiring our crew to thin your property in Santa Fe or East Mountain and surrounding areas.
For a free home assessment and information about rates, call 505-780-1082 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Bridge at Santa Fe Brewing Company, 37 Fire Place, will host a comedy show to benefit YouthWorks on Friday, March 23, from 6 to 8 pm.
Admission is free, but a $10 donation is suggested. See details below.
YouthWorks begins a new session of personal care aide training on April 4.
Graduates who successfully complete the 10-week training program are prepared for entry-level employment and/or post-secondary education in the healthcare field, one of the fastest-growing occupations in the U.S.
For additional information, see below.
A visit to YouthWorks last summer gave artist Shelley Horton-Trippe the impetus for a new series of paintings.
As she described to Pasatiempo, here’s what happened when she arrived at YouthWorks:
Out in the parking lot, there was this great woman leaning against this gorgeous lowrider, and it blew me away. She was so elegant, beautiful, and confident.
My good friend Melynn Schuyler, the director of YouthWorks, introduced me to her, and she was Justice Lovato, the president of the Enchanted Expressions lowrider club in Española.
Can you imagine a woman having that position?
The show High Brow Low Ride is featured at Phil Space, 1410 Second Street, from now through through April 27, 2018.
A portion of all sales will benefit programs at YouthWorks.
Youthworks culinary students prepare Valentine’s Day sweets under the direction of Chef Carmen Rodriguez, who leads the YouthWorks culinary arts program.
For the Valentine’s Day sweets sale, Amanda and Matt are learning the fine points of creating chocolate-covered strawberries, Mexican wedding cookies, and chocolate truffles.
Proceeds from the sales help support culinary arts training for young men and women to prepare them for work in local area restaurants.
Seven YouthWorks students graduated today from a 10-week digital fabrication course at Make Santa Fe.
Through this progrm, participants gain a basic understanding of the Maker Movement in classroom discussions, hands-on training, through field trips, and through projects created independently and in teams using MAKE Santa Fe’s tools, network, and staff.
This course entails 10 weeks of programming, three days a week for five hours.
At graduation, students demonstrate through their portfolios and resumes proficient usage of various disciplines that may include metal fabrication, wood fabrication and carpentry, sewing, CAD drafting, 3D modeling, digital additive manufacturing, and digital subtractive manufacturing.
Participants in the class also develop skills in project planning and management, creating proposals, sketches, and prototypes, as well as writing about their ideas.
YouthWorks staff would like to thank SER Jobs for Progress for securing use of the maker space for the course and for providing students with post-training job and educational placement assistance.
Buy your tickets today to Brandi’s 2018 Oscar Party. See the details below.
This event at the Eldorado Hotel and Spa on March 4, 2018, is a benefit for YouthWorks featuring the Oscars on a big screen, dinner, and an auction and raffle.
Dust off your tux or evening dress and join us to celebrate the Oscars and, at the same time, help support young people who need a helping hand.
The YouthWorks culinary arts team was one of seventeen local food providers serving hors d’oeuvres at the 2018 Chamber Legislative Reception.
Under the direction of Chef Carmen Rodriguez, the YouthWorks culinary team served Teriyaki Chicken Tacos with Red Chile to hundreds of guests gathered at the Santa Fe Convention Center.
Sponsored by the Chamber of Commerce, this January 29 event is the largest legislative networking event of the year. Guests from around New Mexico attend to network, connect, and advocate for New Mexico business.
Chef Carmen Rodriguez, manager of the YouthWorks culinary arts program, and Owner-Chef Ahmed Obo, of Jambo’s Café, take a break to compare notes at the Chamber’s Legislative Reception.
Chef Carmen Rodriguez leveraged his slot at the Food Depot’s 2018 Souper Bowl to give YouthWorks culinary students a chance to put their skills to work in a very public setting.
Ashley and Kevin, shown above with Chef Carmen, spent the day putting the finishing touches on and helping serve Pato con Palomitas, a crowd favorite at the Food Depot’s 24th Souper Bowl.
At this annual Food Depot fundraiser, more than two dozen chefs compete for “best soup” honors in multiple categories. Proceeds from the event help support the Food Depot’s mission to eliminate hunger in Northern New Mexico.
Chef Carmen, the owner/operator of MiSanta Catering along with his wife Penny, is leading the YouthWorks culinary arts program, sharing his expertise in cooking preparation, catering logistics, and front-of-the-house skills.
For more information about YouthWorks Catering or to schedule their services for your next event, contact Penny Rodriguez at YouthWorks.
The Verde Community Project has launched MoGro at the sites served by the Verde after-school meal program.
On Wednesdays, parents picking up their children can purchase a box of fresh fruits and vegetables, for healthier meals at home.
Each box contains eight different kinds of fruits and vegetables, most of them local and organically grown. For details, see below.
Melynn Schuyler will be a guest speaker at Journey Santa Fe on January 21 to discuss successful approaches to re-connect “at-risk” young people to their communities.
The session will be held at 11 am at Collected Works at 202 Galisteo Street and is free and open to the public.
Come early and take advantage of the Collected Works Coffehouse or browse the bookstore, then settle in for a lively discussion about successful approaches to conquer the perils that face too many young people in our community today.
Journey Santa Fe is a weekly, philanthropic gathering of progressive minded individuals who explore local and regional issues that influence our daily lives and those of future generations in New Mexico.
The weekly conversations are designed to help ignite change for the common good and provide solutions and community for all.
As part of the Verde Community Project, an effort with initial funding by the City of Santa Fe, young people from YouthWorks are learning how to weatherize homes.
Training was held last week, December 6-8, at Santa Fe Community College and included a tour of the EnergySmart Academy Lab and Manufactured Home.
Students got an introduction to the tools and materials used in weatherization and instruction in on-the-job safety. During the course of their training, they got demonstrations and gained experience in hands-on installation in these areas:
- Measuring electricity consumption
- Carbon Monoxide and smoke alarms
- Sealing air leaks with caulk and spray foam, weather-stripping
- Water heaters – general operation and insulating electric and gas units
- Calculating water flow
- Installing low-flow show heads
- Insulating water pipes
- Installing window insulator kits
Following completion of the training, these young people will be working in teams under the supervision of crew leaders from Proscape, a local landscaping and maintenance business that has volunteered its supervisory services as a way of contributing to the community.
The crews will focus on weatherizing forty homes of local residents who cannot afford to take these energy-saving steps on their own.
Fifty New Mexico History Museum docents feasted on a special menu based totally on local New Mexico products.
Winter Harvest Salad with Maple Balsamic Vinaigrette
Achiote Pork & Chicken Tinga Tamales
Red and Green Chile
Natillas & Buenuelos
Chef Carmen is offering guidance to the YouthWorks culinary program, sharing his expertise in cooking preparation, catering logistics, and front-of-the-house skills.
For more information about YouthWorks Catering and the services they offer, contact Penny Rodriguez.
The work you do at YouthWorks is powerful. I’ve never before seen such a transformative program for young adults.Rabbi Neil Amswych
Rabbi Neil Amswych, of Temple Beth Shalom, interviewed YouthWorks Executive Director Melynn Schuyler on KSFR at the end of November.
To hear the discussion about the needs of “at-risk” young people in our community—for safe shelter, counseling, education, and job training—click below.
On his half-hour program Soul Searching, Rabbi Neil engages with faith leaders, academics, and members of the community to hear differing perspectives on key questions that we all ask at differing times in our lives.
The program airs on KSFR 101.1 the second and fourth Tuesday of each month at 6:30 pm.
Plan to join us on on the afternoon of Sunday, December 17, to hear from local residents about the impact of the planned Siler Yard: Arts + Creativity Center.
Apprentices from YouthWorks have been working with Littleglobe to document the stories of residents in the neighborhood who will be affected by the project.
Their work is designed to ensure that local voices and perspectives are being heard and acknowledged. It also serves as training in interviewing, storytelling, and media production.
During the session, the apprentices will be incorporating their own stories and perspectives about the media making process.
The YouthWorks class of 2017 celebrated their graduation on November 16, 2017, with a special dinner catered by Chef Carmen Rodriguez.
More than forty young people earned their GED and/or certification in programs including construction, conservation, aquatic restoration, food handling, personal care, and CPR/first aid. Others were recognized for their participation in the Youth Survey Project and the Verde Community Project.
|Antonio Romero Maes|
|Antony Prado Sanchez|
The YouthWorks wildfire crew was featured in the National Fire Protection Association blog for making an “incredible difference” in the wildfire safety of our community while at the same time learning basic forestry skills.
To read the full blog post, click here.
The City of Santa Fe and the Mayor’s Sustainability Commission have just announced the winners of the 2017 Mayor’s Sustainability Awards.
The YouthWorks Verde Community Project is being honored as the runner-up in the “Triple Bottom Line” category for creating a unique set of partnerships to address issues at the intersection of climate change and poverty alleviation.
For details about the other winners and the awards ceremony on November 9, 2017, click here.
In today’s “My View” in the New Mexican, the Rev. H. Blaine Wimberly, pastor at Zia United Methodist Church, calls for support for homeless youth in Santa Fe.
The weather has started to turn very cold. This year, we hope to protect these vulnerable young adults starting in December. While we continue to work with the city to find a more permanent solution, we need the residents of Santa Fe to once again pay attention to these suffering youngsters who are driven to desperate measures to survive during the cold months.
The ShelterNow! project transforms lives. It takes vulnerable young adults discarded by society and helps them get their lives back together, find employment and more permanent accommodation.
We all know that we have a duty to help these vulnerable kids, so please contact YouthWorks now and offer help.
Click here to read the full commentary in the New Mexican.
Mayor Gonzales and City Councilors Peter Ives, Sig Lindell, and Renee Villareal visited the Verde Community Project kitchen this week to meet the culinary team from YouthWorks.
These young people, who are enrolled in culinary training at YouthWorks, are using their newly learned job skills to prepare healthy meals for low-income children at after-school programs in local elementary schools and Boys and Girls Clubs.
The Verde Wildfire crew members continue their work at the Santa Fe Institute’s Tesuque site. They’re clearing dead and downed wood to mitigate the possibility of wildfires, work that will eventually cover more than 100 acres around Santa Fe.
Approximately 1600 tons of dead and down wood will be recycled as biomass, or firewood, or mulch or become healthy compost.
Crews from the Verde Community Project erect another greenhouse at Reunity Resources. The fresh vegetables grown here will be used in meals delivered to after-school programs at local schools and social services organizations like the Boys and Girls Club.
YouthWorks, in collaboration with the Food Depot, launched the Verde Community Project’s after-school meal program on Monday, October 16.
This program, which is partially funded by the City of Santa Fe’s Verde Fund, will provide fresh, nutritious meals to elementary school children at risk of not having enough to eat.
Young people enrolled in the YouthWorks culinary job-training program prepare the meals, which are then delivered each day to local elementary schools and Boys and Girls Clubs.
Developing Culinary Skills to Feed Hungry Children
YouthWorks culinary students work in the Verde kitchen, preparing nutritious meals for the after-school meal program.
This effort, a collaboration between the Food Depot and YouthWorks, will feed children who might otherwise not have enough to eat after the end of the school day.
Growing Produce for After-School Meal Program
Ian and Denysse gather produce at the Reunity Resources greenhouse and compost yard to deliver to the Verde kitchen for the after-school meal program that serves children who might otherwise not have enough to eat after the end of the school day.
Training to Protect the Forest and Fight Wildfires
As part of the Verde Community Project, young people from YouthWorks train with experts from the Wildfire Network to learn ecological monitoring, erosion control techniques, and basic wildland firefighting.
After beginning his YouthWorks apprenticeship as a chimney sweep earlier this month, Eddie Orozco got a rave review from his new boss.
Marc Black, master chimney sweep at Arthur Black Chimney & Dryer Exhaust, was so impressed with Eddie’s great work that he stopped by YouthWorks to express his thanks for having Eddie on the job.
Eddie is exactly the type of worker and individual I needed to help get our business going. He has the unteachable qualities of desire, diligence, and resilient attitude. On top of that he is highly intelligent, scrupulously polite, and friendly with customers.
In seven years of sweeping chimneys for other companies, I have never had a helper of this caliber.
If Eddie is the standard for YouthWorks, I will gladly tell anyone looking for workers that they should make the call.Marc Black
The Pueblo of Pojoaque will hold a recruiting event at YouthWorks on Friday, October 6, 2017. HR Recruitment Specialist Karla Lujan will be on-site to speak with students about current opportunities.
Interested individuals should bring an up-to-date resume. Contact Devin Baldwin at (505) 989-1855 for more information.
Students from YouthWorks engage in discussion on September 22, 2017, with young European leaders from nearly a dozen countries who are visiting the U.S. to better understand American social, political, and economic issues.
The International Visitor Leadership program is sponsored by U.S. State Department and hosted by the Santa Fe Council on International Relations.
Four apprentices from YouthWorks are working with Littleglobe–a local nonprofit committed to interdisciplinary, collaborative art projects–to document stories from the neighborhood surrounding the developing Siler Yard: Arts + Creativity Center.
The apprentices are interviewing community members to tell their stories about how the project will affect them and to ensure that their voices and perspectives are being heard.
By participating in this project, the young people are learning interviewing, storytelling, and media production. As the project progresses, they will be incorporating their own stories and perspectives in the media making process.
These stories of the impact of the Siler Yard project will be shared at a community listening event and on radio broadcasts. Watch for details to come about when and where.
The clothing drive underway at YouthWorks makes all the difference in getting ready to interview for a job. Board member Fred Seibel provides a bit of advice on tie tying, and YouthWorks student Juan is suited up and ready for action.
YouthWorks is collecting gently used “career” attire for both men and woman, sizes extra-small to extra-large, like the outfits below.
If you can provide any of the following, drop them off from 8 am to 4:30 pm at 1504 Cerrillos Road in Santa Fe. The entrance is around the back, off Taos Street.
Suits * Suit Jackets * Blazers
Blouses & Shirts * Skirts * Dress Slacks & Pants * Ties
Closed Toe Shoes * Non-Slip Shoes * Work Boots
For more information, contact Kineret Yardena at (505) 989-1855.
Nusenda Credit Union staff will be at YouthWorks to conduct a free financial literacy workshop from 9 – 10 am on Thursday, August 31. The workshop is free and open to all YouthWorks participants.
Following the workshop, Nusenda staff will have membership applications on-site for individuals interested in opening accounts.
For more information, contact Devin Baldwin, Workforce Innovation Program Coordinator, or Jonathan Tapia, On-the-Job Trainer, at (505) 989-1855.
Staff from the New Mexico State University I-CAN program will be at YouthWorks to conduct a free nutrition workshop from 1:30 – 2:30 pm on Tuesday, August 29. The workshop is free and open to all YouthWorks participants.
For more information, contact Devin Baldwin, Workforce Innovation Program Coordinator, or Jonathan Tapia, On-the-Job Trainer, at (505) 989-1855.
On Friday, August 25, Krys Nystrom of the Wildfire Network briefed a young audience at YouthWorks about training opportunities in ecological monitoring, erosion control techniques, and basic wildland firefighting.
These positions are funded by the Verde Community Project, an initiative partially funded by the City of Santa Fe.
On Friday, August 25, at 9 am, Krys Nystrom of the Wildfire Network will speak at YouthWorks about training opportunities available through the Verde Community Project.
With the support of the City of Santa Fe Verde Fund, YouthWorks is partnering with the Wildfire Network to provide training to young adults, ages 18 through 25, in ecological monitoring, erosion control techniques, and basic wildland firefighting.
Luis Sánchez Saturno / The New Mexican
When a wall surrounding Helen and Tunnie Sharpe’s “Garden of Love” was damaged by a hit-and-run driver, neighbor Gail Rachor called for help.
Among those responding . . . an entire crew of young men and women from YouthWorks who, as Rachor said, “went beyond the call of duty” to restore this Santa Fe landmark.
Read the New Mexican coverage of this community effort here.
Last Friday, YouthWorks students and staff rolled up their sleeves to help repair the wall of the famous house and garden of Helen and Tunnie Sharpe, located on the corner of Agua Fria and Velarde.
The wall was damaged as the result of a hit and run accident the night before, leaving the famous garden with its saints and historic paraphernalia vulnerable to potential theft and vandalism.
After hearing about the accident, YouthWorks Executive Director Melynn Schuyler reached out to Gail Rachor, a friend and neighbor of the Sharpes to see what could be done to help.
Almost immediately, YouthWorks dispatched a team to help repair the wall. Students and staff are scheduled to return to the site on Monday, August 14, to finish restoring this Santa Fe landmark to its original condition.
Check out this Santa Fe New Mexican feature for the latest on the collaboration between YouthWorks and students from the UNM Medical School.
Reporter Sami Edge details how the brainstorming with YouthWorks students translated into public health outreach in rural New Mexico.
Congratulations to YouthWorks program graduate Pete Ulibarri on his new position with the City of Santa Fe!
In May, Pete successfully completed a pilot training program in digital fabrication and advanced manufacturing, as part of a collaborative effort between YouthWorks and MAKE Santa Fe.
With the help of YouthWorks staff, Pete got a second apprenticeship with a local fencing company while he looked for permanent employment.
In July, Pete was offered and accepted a position with the City of Santa Fe Parks & Recreation Department as a Maintenance Laborer. Pete officially began his new position on August 1 and has been stopping by YouthWorks after getting off work with the City.
YouthWorks is proud of Pete and wishes him continued success.
YouthWorks is gearing up recruitment for five to six part-time job opportunities with Verde Community Project partner Reunity Resources.
Reunity Resources is recruiting young people to learn on the job about the different aspects of greenhouse management, composting, and sustainable farming practices. The ideal candidate will be between the ages of 18-25.
The Verde Project is a City of Santa Fe initiative launched by Mayor Javier Gonzales to bring positive change to our community. The Project’s goal is to connect 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.
University of New Mexico School of Medicine students Claire Melo, Brian Wilkinson, and Ryan Keffer wrapped up their final sexual health class with YouthWorks students on Wednesday, July 19.
The three second-year medical students brainstormed with YouthWorks staff at the end of June about how to engage in public health outreach with YouthWorks students.
Out of that brainstorming session, the trio of med students developed a four-week comprehensive, youth-focused health curriculum around the topics of sexual health, anatomy and physiology, substance abuse, and mental health.
When asked why they chose YouthWorks as the site to develop this public health programming, Mr. Wilkinson said, “We are passionate about teaching and educating the youth on issues that affect them, and want to make sure they can make informed decisions.”
As a result of the positive feedback received from students, YouthWorks hopes to continue this collaborative partnership with UNM medical students in the future.
Ms. Melo said her greatest take-away from the experience was “learning how to present information, obtain feedback, and implement that feedback into design.”
The educational materials developed over the four-week period will incorporate student feedback, be updated to reflect that feedback, and will become the property of YouthWorks to use in educating future students.
City of Santa Fe, MAKE Santa Fe Earn Community WINS Grant Recognizing Neighborhood Revitalization Efforts
$50,000 will support a Digital Fabrication Youth Lab to equip young Santa Feans with advanced manufacturing workforce skills
July 17, 2017
SANTA FE – A pilot curriculum launched by MAKE Santa Fe with support from the City of Santa Fe Economic Development fund to give young Santa Feans skills to build careers in advanced manufacturing and digital fabrication will receive a big boost this year. MAKE Santa Fe and the City of Santa Fe became one of only 6 city partnerships nationwide to secure a CommunityWINS grant that supports neighborhood revitalization.
The DigiFab Youth Lab teaches “emerging critical skills necessary for succeeding in our rapidly evolving economy,” and launched in 2016 after earning support from the City Economic Development fund in a competitive RFP process focused on workforce development in the community.
As a pilot in partnership with YouthWorks, it has provided over 200 hours of training over each 12-week program, teaching skills in manufacturing and fabrication but also focusing on entrepreneurialism and mentorship, job or apprenticeship placement, design thinking, and employment “soft skills” like teamwork.
With the additional funding, MAKE Santa Fe will be able to expand and adapt its programs to serve multiple cohorts simultaneously and share their experience with other communities.
Mayor Javier M. Gonzales, who accepted the award on behalf of the partnership at a recent United State Conference of Mayors meeting, said, “MAKE Santa Fe puts local people to work in the jobs of the future – helping businesses tap into a more qualified workforce and giving young people a non-college track to a successful career. This is the kind of work we need to be doing to help local people find work and build their lives in this community.
Zane Fischer, MAKE Santa Fe’s co-founder and himself an entrepreneur in digital manufacturing, said, “This Digital Fabrication and Advanced Manufacturing program is providing employment and entrepreneurial opportunities for the young adults in our community. It’s delivering the skill sets they need to thrive and innovate going into the future and offering an opportunity to level up in a big way.”
Fischer added, “We’re incredibly proud to be partners with The City of Santa Fe and its economic development emphasis on smart, forward thinking workforce and apprenticeship programs.”
Watch a video that breaks down the program and features some of the first students: https://vimeo.com/224789408
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 the New Mexican‘s coverage of this initiative.
Santa Fe, NM – Particularly in the wake of President Donald J. Trump’s announcement that he would withdraw the United States from the worldwide agreement to combat climate change known as the Paris Accord, local action has moved to the forefront as our best path forward in mitigating the impact of climate change.
Along with the Sustainable Santa Fe Commission, the Climate Action Task Force, Carbon Neutral 2040, and the Climate Mayors Accord commitment to honor the Paris Agreement, the Verde Fund is one of the signature environmental programs this administration has launched to combat climate change, preserve precious natural resources like water, and build resiliency and sustainability into the core of Santa Fe’s way of life.
“The Verde Fund makes sure taxpayer money is put to good use supporting local families who feel like they’ve been left behind – helping working Santa Feans deal with costs of food, water, electricity and other resources that are rising as a result of climate change. At the same time, these dollars can connect families who are out of work to the opportunities that come with an economy finally focusing on sustainability at a high level,” said Mayor Javier M. Gonzales.
“What we do now,” he added, “will set us up for failure or success in future generations.”
Established by resolution 2016-42, the Verde Fund’s mission is threefold: reduce systemic poverty, achieve carbon neutrality, and empower Santa Fe’s workforce, developing resiliency and opportunity in families where unemployment or under-employment are common.
The Council allocated an initial amount of $300,000 for the first round of programs and in December of 2016, city staff began the process of soliciting and reviewing competitive bids from local companies and groups that fit the mission of the Verde Fund as established. Now, after a competitive bidding process that included interviews with finalists by a committee including community representatives and issue staff, the City is proposing, pending a Council review and approval process that will begin on Monday in Councilor Carmichael Dominguez’s Finance Committee, to award two community-led initiatives with funding for the 2017 cycle.
One awardee is a community-wide collaboration among 12 organizations, the Verde Community Impact Collaborative, which includes YouthWorks, the Food Depot, Reunity Resources, MoGro, ProScape, Wildfire Network, Interfaith Leadership Alliance, Dashing Delivery, All Trees Firewood, the Santa Fe Community College and SFPS Adelante Program for Children, Youth and Families Experiencing Homelessness, and the Santa Fe Public Schools District.
The Collaborative will receive $200,000, and partners will contribute an additional $300,000 in-kind, to meet specific goals on the climate and poverty issues that formulate the Verde Fund Mission: food security and greenhouse gas production, home energy efficiency, wildfire mitigation, biofuel reduction and recycling, youth homelessness, job creation and career training.
The Verde Community Impact Collaborative project will:
- Create new jobs and train 40 young people in sustainability careers like weatherization, healthy food production, biofuel reduction and greenhouse management,
- Deliver 750 meals per day featuring local produce to 12 Homework Diner sites,
- Provide 50 boxes of fresh produce to 4 distribution sites that work with families in need,
- Reduce the risk of catastrophic fire in 75 acres of the Santa Fe wildland-urban interface,
- Design a permanent housing pilot with local families to get 4 young people off the street,
- Reduce CO2 emission by 36 tons per year through wildfire mitigation, biomass recycling and energy efficiency/weatherization efforts, and
- Save low-income families hard-earned dollars on utility bills through energy efficiency/home weatherization.
Melynn Schuyler of YouthWorks said, “We’ve set big goals for our community-wide impact project. This collaborative group is ready for the challenge to cause positive change in assisting our community. Our partnership will connect local young people to the economy that they have been traditionally denied entry to, while helping our most vulnerable families address hunger, save money, build resiliency and prepare Santa Fe for the impact that climate change will have on all of us. We’re proud and motivated to work collectively to leverage our strengths through partnership for the benefit of Santa Fe’s families and children and set a high standard in the Verde Fund’s inaugural year.”
The second is a grant in the amount of $100,000 to Homewise, an organization focused on housing and financial health for low income families in the Santa Fe area. The grant award will support 5 years of Solar Opportunity Loan Fund expansion.
Homewise will leverage the initial investment into an additional $400,000 of debt capital, which over 5 years will enable 20 Santa Fe households per year at 80% or less of the local median income to access PV solar systems using long-term, low-interest loans and make energy and water conservation upgrades that will save both resources and money over the life of the homes.
Homewise projects will:
- Reduce CO2 emissions by 89 tons per year through Solar PV installation in each year of the program,
- Reduce CO2 emissions an additional 18 tons per year through efficiency upgrades in each year of the program,
- Save low-income families hard-earned dollars on utility bills, and
- Reach out to the community through the Santa Fe Community College and Christus St. Vincent to locate and qualify the 20 households.
Mike Loftin, Homewise CEO, said, “Partnerships like this one have real potential to change lives and open up worlds of access where it didn’t exist before. Homewise is proud to be working with the City and the Verde Fund, leveraging an initial investment into 5 years of difference-making solar installations on homes for middle class Santa Feans who are eager to save money, conserve water and electricity, and play a vital role in the sustainability of this community we all love.”
The two grant tracks meet all three of Verde Fund’s goals. They invest in our workforce – boosting the solar industry and training more than 40 young people who are out of the workforce in fields that have staying power and give them the tools to make ends meet. They reduce carbon emissions, with targets for each year of the programs that add up to nearly 150 fewer tons of carbon per year in the atmosphere. And they help local Santa Fe families prepare for climate change by eliminating reliance on fossil fuel energy and cutting utility bills.
The combined total of City investment, organizational in-kind matches of $300,000, and Homewise debt capital leverage of $400,000 means that an initial city input of $300,000 will have the effect of $1,000,000 in investment into jobs and sustainability in the neighborhoods where it is most needed.
Mayor Gonzales said, “We couldn’t be more excited about seeing this money have an impact in the community – creating jobs and lowering utility bills while helping increase our community’s sustainability is a win for the whole city, and with the Council’s approval, I’m ready to get to work as soon as possible.”
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.
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.
Youth Works Cohort Shares Maker Passion with CommunityPosted by Make Santa Fe on Wednesday, May 3, 2017
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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 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, 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.
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 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.
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.