Durbin, Duckworth Announce More Than $5 Million in Federal Funding to Help At-Risk Youth in Illinois Find Employment

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) today announced that the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) awarded five non-profit organizations in Illinois a total of $5,370,255 through YouthBuild, a job-training and educational program for at-risk youth ages 16-24.  YouthBuild helps young people complete high school, earn industry-recognized credentials for in-demand occupations, and undergo training to build housing for low-income or homeless individuals and families in their communities.

“The best anti-poverty, anti-crime, anti-violence program is a job.  That is why Senator Duckworth and I have continued to support programs that expand access to job training and apprenticeships,” Durbin said.  “Our underserved communities need the federal government to be an engaged partner when it comes to expanding economic opportunity, and these YouthBuild grants will help achieve that goal.”

“Programs like YouthBuild help young people across Illinois develop the professional skills they need to succeed in the job market,” Duckworth said.  “I am proud to work with Senator Durbin to ensure federal funding supports efforts to empower hardworking communities through education and employment.”

Under this announcement, the following organizations will receive funding:

  • City Incite, Inc. (Chicago, IL): $1,100,000
  • Community Assistance Programs (Chicago, IL): $970,255
  • Homework Hangout Club, Inc. (Decatur, IL): $1,100,000
  • Spero Family Services (Mt. Vernon, IL): $1,100,000
  • YBMC, Inc. d.b.a. YouthBuild McLean County (Normal, IL): $1,100,000

Participants in YouthBuild programs split their time between the vocational training work site and the classroom, where they earn their high school diploma or equivalency degree, learn to be community leaders, and prepare for postsecondary training opportunities, including college, apprenticeships, and employment.  YouthBuild includes significant support systems, such as a mentoring, follow-up education, employment, and personal counseling services; and participation in community service and civic engagement.  There are approximately 210 actively-funded DOL YouthBuild programs at any given time in more than 40 states, serving over 6,000 youth nationally per year.