Action for Boston Community Development (ABCD Inc.) is looking to enroll several hundred of Boston’s 13-year olds into the YEA! Program, an engaging 3-week course just designed for children of this particular age. The program is also reaching out for funding support to enroll as many youth as possible.
YEA! (Youth Engaged in Action) addresses a need to connect this critical demographic of inner-city youth who are too young to work but too old for day camp in developmental activities. These middle-school aged teens from low-income families in Boston often struggle to find fun and structured programming in the summer months while many of their parents are at work.
YEA! provides a three-week learning experience for these teens addressing the need for increased safety and responsibility on social media sites along with raising awareness about opportunities for volunteer service in their communities and government. The YEA! Program offers unique workshops on how to become financially responsible as a young person including how to manage their money and save for the future. Additionally, YEA! graduates earn gift cards totaling $100 upon completion of the program.
“We want to give these kids a positive summer experience, a chance to learn about themselves, their community and their government,” said ABCD President/CEO John J. Drew. “We want them to know that there are adults who care about them and opportunities for them to be all they can be.”
Research shows that the middle school years are a critical “make or break” time for young people, particularly those living in high-poverty areas. ABCD youth counselors agree that reaching underprivileged youngsters in the early teen years provides a special opportunity to help shape their lives for the better. The program helps participants become young leaders through awareness building and financial literacy while teaching them how to take positive action on issues of importance in their communities.
ABCD also operates the SummerWorks jobs program, now in its 50th year, which offers paid work experience, tutoring, mentoring and career development to youths aged 14 to 21 from low-income Boston families. These young people work at more than 175 non-profit worksites including museums, hospitals, government agencies and more.
To learn more about these programs please visit www.bostonabcd.org or call 617.348.6586
ABCD serves more than 100,000 low-income Boston-area residents through its central offices and a decentralized network of Neighborhood Service Centers (NSCs), Head Start centers, Family Planning sites and Foster Grandparent sites. Programs and affiliations include Fuel Assistance; Head Start; Child Care Services; Child Care Choices of Boston; Education; Career Development; Housing and Homelessness Services; Health Services; Family Planning; Urban College of Boston; University High – an Alternative High School; Ostiguy High School for high school students in recovery; Weatherization; Foster Grandparents; Elder Services; Intergenerational Programs; management of the Combined Federal Campaign, Commonwealth of Massachusetts and City of Boston employee giving campaigns; advocacy and consumer services.