YouthBuild Director’s December 2020 Update

“What you do now will go a long way in the future to prepare for self, family, and the community.” – Damon Washington, YouthBuild student

Happy Holidays YouthBuild Family!

The program has been extremely busy over the past several months.  Volunteers of America Chesapeake & Carolinas YouthBuild staff and students continue to work with Newport News residents at the Four Oaks Training Center (FOTC) to get Level 1 trades training in carpentry, electrical, plumbing, and HVAC.  For the past six weeks, Newport News YouthBuild COHORT 1 students have received carpentry training – developing their skills for future employment.  Carpentry trains the students on cutting, shaping and installation of building materials during the construction of residential homes.  YouthBuild students learned hands-on fundamentals, importance of precise measurements, and all aspects of teamwork prior to going out on the job site.  The training at FOTC replicates what would be experienced on a job site, including safety requirements, which the students have received after being credentialed in Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

Newport News YouthBuild had the pleasure to work alongside Habitat for Humanity Peninsula and Greater Williamsburg on November 18 and 19 at 2102 Madison, Newport News, VA.  The students were able to gain hands-on experience from actual construction workers on a current building project.  The students were excited to help be part of the construction that would become the home of a single mother of two children. They were given the opportunity to implement safety measures learned during OSHA training and received professional instruction from certified grade A construction professionals.  Damon Washington, YouthBuild student stated: “What you do now will go a long way in the future to prepare for self, family, and the community”.

Newport News YouthBuild COHORT 2 is in their fourth week of Bootcamp. During this seven week course, beginning on November 9, 2020, YouthBuild students are instructed by career coaches and academic instructors from the Peninsula Regional Education Program (PREP).  In Bootcamp, students review, reinforce and strengthen areas of reading, writing, and math in order to prepare them to successfully complete NCCER (National Center for Construction Education and Research) certification and their General Educational Development (GED) exam (if applicable).  Students also are instructed in digital, financial, and cultural literacy, career exploration and job readiness, and soft skills in order to ensure they are successful in the workplace.

Bootcamp meets Monday through Thursday. Class meetings are typically in-person, but due to COVID-19 and social distancing guidelines, students interact with instructors and classmates via Zoom and Canvas Learning Management system. Students learn through a variety of methods such as short instructor lessons, written and verbal class discussions, videos, and more! Welcome to the YouthBuild Family COHORT 2!!

Newport News YouthBuild program provides opportunities for young adults between the ages of 16 to 24 who exercise a level of commitment for themselves and their professional growth.  The program will build the skills and mindsets that lead to lifelong learning, livelihood, and leadership. YouthBuild serves young people who do not a high school diploma and want to receive their GED, as well as having difficulties with financial resources. The focus and underpinning of the program continues to be:  Commitment + Opportunity = Success!

YouthBuild students work alongside Habitat for Humanity Peninsula and Greater Williamsburg to help construct a home for a family in need.

YouthBuild Shoutouts

Student(s) of the Month:

October: Daryl Thomas – COHORT 1

November: Jalen Dove – COHORT 1 and Kyle Douglas – COHORT 2

Birthdays: Jaylen Rodriguez – November 19th, Karee Boswell – November 25th, Taijalon Smith – December 7th, Yavin Johnson – December 16th, Shaylynn Diaz – January 5th, Kyle Douglas – January 6th, Naajee Walton – January 7th, and A’shon Livingston – January 21st

Adios familia!

“Feliz Navidad y que las bendiciones continúen en vuestra vida.”
“Merry Christmas and may the blessings continue in your life.”

Blessings to all,
Daniel S. Carrera
Program Director
Newport News YouthBuild

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