YouthBuild USA receives $10.9M AmeriCorps grant
June 15, 2022 — In recognition of its service to opportunity youth, YouthBuild USA has received a grant of $10.9 million from AmeriCorps, the federal agency for national service and community volunteerism, to help young people across the nation build the skillsets and mindsets that lead to long-term professional and personal success. The award makes YouthBuild USA one of the agency’s largest single grantees of this funding cycle.
The first installment of a three-year grant, the funds will be distributed to YouthBuild programs across the country as they partner with opportunity youth — young adults between the ages of 16 and 24 who are neither in school nor employed — to reclaim their education, gain job skills and become leaders in their communities. With a $2 million increase from last year’s award, the grant will support approximately 2,387 YouthBuild AmeriCorps members in 63 communities and 30 states who will build affordable housing and provide community healthcare, conservation efforts, recycling and sustainability, computer infrastructure, and child development services for individuals and families.
“With the incredible, uplifting support of AmeriCorps, thousands of opportunity youth are empowered to build brighter futures for themselves and their communities,” said John Valverde, president and CEO of YouthBuild USA. “These young people are addressing unmet needs in their respective neighborhoods while pursuing their education, preparing for future careers, and reclaiming a sense of true belonging. We have much to learn from their service, resilience and leadership. YouthBuild USA is honored and so very grateful for our longstanding, growing partnership with AmeriCorps.”
Through the grant, more than 750,000 direct service hours will be completed by the members, and at least 240 units of affordable housing will be made available for low-income individuals and families. In addition, $4.2 million in Segal AmeriCorps Education Awards are provided for the AmeriCorps members funded by these grants. After completing a full term of service, AmeriCorps members receive awards they can use to repay qualified student loans and to pay current educational expenses at eligible institutions of higher education and training programs.
“AmeriCorps’ prioritizes funding for programs that focus on equity, prepare individuals for the workplace and provide support to those who face challenges with job preparedness due to limited resources,” said AmeriCorps CEO Michael D. Smith. “YouthBuild USA is a longstanding partner whose successful track record in offering meaningful service opportunities, lifting up future leaders and reducing poverty will provide opportunities to thousands of youth and young adults across the nation.”
YouthBuild USA has been an AmeriCorps grantee since AmeriCorps’ inception in 1994. Since then, YouthBuild USA has enrolled more than 46,000 AmeriCorps members who have generated millions of direct service hours, including developing or repairing thousands of units of affordable housing for low-income individuals and families. Nearly 12,000 YouthBuild AmeriCorps members have earned their high school equivalency (HSE) and a total of $36.5 million in Segal AmeriCorps Education Awards.