On Monday, July 3, City Mayor, Ras Baraka, announced his ‘2017 Summer Youth Employment Program’. For the third straight year, Mayor Baraka, has reached out and provided jobs for the young adults in the City of Newark.
“About 5,000 kids applied, we were able to give jobs to maybe half that number of kids,” said Baraka. “Which is three times more than we were actually giving. Which means we weren’t meeting the needs of our community in a desperately long time at this wide of a gap. So, we’ve closed that gap a little bit, but we want to close it even more, and we can do that with the great support and help.”
The program was made possible by the support of 17 corporate and charitable sponsors. The summer initiative offers young adults a combination of financial literacy as well as workplace training.
“For many young people, a first job is a first paycheck,” said Daria Sheehan of the Citi Foundation.
Mayor Baraka said working as a young adult would have never gotten him to where he is today.
“I actually looked forward to that in the summer time,” said Baraka. “One, it was something for me to do. Two, I had money in my pocket, it made me feel like I was a man. And three, I met some very incredible people, and made lifetime friendships with folks that I’m still friends with today."
The White House recognized last year’s program as one of only 16 programs to employ urban youth.