LA2050 Grants Challenge applications are open now through June 28th, 2024.
2023 Grants Challenge

Long Beach Youth Ready 2 Rise Ambassadors Training Program

Idea by Centro CHA

Program grant funds will go to support, a local collaborative approach in the City of Long Beach (the second largest city in LA County) to provide paid work experience, job training, and mentoring for high-risk youth and younger adults ages 16-24 and identified as disproportionately impacted by the justice system and violence, particularly among homicides, shootings, and aggravated assaults and achieve the overall goal to improve public health and safety and economic recovery. Partners include United Cambodian Community and Love Beyond Limits.


What is the primary issue area that your application will impact?

Youth Economic Advancement (sponsored by the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation)

In which areas of Los Angeles will you be directly working?

South Bay

In what stage of innovation is this project, program, or initiative?

Expand existing project, program, or initiative

What is your understanding of the issue that you are seeking to address?

There are 129, 938 youth and emerging adults in Long Beach between the ages of 5-24 years old. Although youth live across the entire City of Long Beach, the majority of those between the ages of 5-17 live in Central, West, and North Long Beach, which are areas with the highest rates of low-income households. Nearly 1 in 4 (24%) Long Beach youth under the age of 18 live in families with incomes below the federal poverty level. The majority of Long Beach Youth and Young Adults ages 5-24 are youth of color 56% Latinx, 16% White, 14% African American, 11% Asian, and 2% other. High School graduation rates for Black and Latinos are about 85%, but less than half are considered prepared for college or career success after high school. In Addition, the COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant economic impact on Long Beach residents-particularly the City's low-income and communities of color-leaving residents struggling to pay for necessities such as rent, food, transportation, and health care.

Describe the project, program, or initiative this grant will support to address the issue.

Our proposed project will address COVID-19 social-economic impacts, and community violence related to trauma and reconnect the high-risk and system-impacted target youth population back to their perspective communities' history, values, and traditions to support a holistic healing approach that fosters positive social-emotional learning, leadership development, High School attainment, college readiness and enrollment, and workforce development. Centro CHA (lead applicant) will partner with two local non-profit organizations, United Cambodian Community (UCC) and Love Beyond Limits (LBL), to enroll a total of 90 target youth population (16-24 years old) The proposed project will strategically combine the leadership, cultural competence, and violence prevention expertise of Centro CHA, UCC, and LBL to support and empower the target population. By the end of the program, participants will have demonstrated leadership capacity, aptitude, and an interest in community service; exhibit flexibility, maturity, good integrity, strong social skills, and open-mindedness, and have the motivation necessary to be active in their community; and will have either graduated high school/earned an HS diploma or GED/ or demonstrate on target for graduation, and/ or enroll in college and attend at least one semester of post-secondary school after program exit.

Describe how Los Angeles County will be different if your work is successful.

Our vision for the program is to sustain a Multi-Cultural alliance across culturally based organizations and CBOs predominately serving local communities of color and institute a Youth Cultural Ambassador Leadership training model program that can be replicated to develop a cadre of culturally diverse youth leaders who will have successfully completed the training program and will serve as a youth base within each organization's cultural center to support local advocacy efforts to address social issues and environmental disparities that cause violence and will be at the forefront to drive local change through advocacy, education, and outreach, youth-led media campaign development, serve as messengers of peace and promote a thriving community where investments for low-income communities and youth are a priority, and where residents are connected, civically engaged, working, and living in sustainable homes, schools, and communities.

What evidence do you have that this project, program, or initiative is or will be successful, and how will you define and measure success?

We specialize in providing workforce development programs aligned with federal WIOA formula and guidelines for monitoring and tracking program, expenditures, and participant outcomes, collecting and analyzing data on a quarterly basis, providing comprehensive reports on established timelines, and reviewing data for accuracy and consistency, ongoing programmatic and data monitoring fidelity checks and audits. In 2021, Centro CHA enrolled and provided services to 89 participants. 95% of our participants have completed job readiness. 76% or 68 participants gained an industry-recognized certificate including, Screen-Print Technician, Medical Assistant, Forklift Certification, Refinery Safety Overview, and Security Guard Card. 76% or 68 participants have reported employment attainment or have enrolled in long-term vocational skills training or college, and placed into local union apprenticeship training programs.

Approximately how many people will be impacted by this project, program, or initiative?

Direct Impact: 90

Indirect Impact: 8,000

Describe the role of collaborating organizations on this project.

Centro CHA will partner with (UCC) and (LBL), enroll 90 target youth (30 per each org.), and will be responsible for the following provision of services: 1) Outreach & Recruitment 2) Eligibility screening a. Reside in the City of Long Beach identified target zip codes: (90802, 90804, 90805, 90806, 90810, 90813) b. Be between 16 and 24 years old at the time of enrollment c. Demonstrate leadership potential and community involvement d. Identify one or more risk factors 3) Program Implementation a.Culture Education & Leadership Development, Work readiness/ Job Training b. Mentoring c. Case-Management d. Cross Referrals 4) Track Program Performance Outcomes