Starbucks YUTE Work Project provides support to unemployed youth
Amid ongoing concerns surrounding youth unemployment and its negative consequences, the Multicare Youth Foundation (MYF), through its Starbucks YUTE Work Project, has facilitated a one-year mentorship programme for participating young adults.
In an effort to impart knowledge and provide guidance and support to young men and women, the mentorship programme instills social, professional and personal values for self-empowerment.
The Starbucks YUTE Work Project will train, match and support 60 protÈgÈs between the ages of 16 and 29 years from volatile communities in Montego Bay and Kingston with mentors to encourage community engagement, and incorporate consultation alongside the local youth-serving organisation.
"This project will promote positive behavioural change and advocacy for job placement, career advancement and personal development. Our volunteer mentors are equipped with the tools to assist our youth participants in building self-esteem and paving the way for improving overall attitude," said Alicia Glasgow Gentles, executive director of the MYF.
The MYF head said the organisation hopes to maintain lasting relationships with youth and their mentors in the programme. "Successful mentoring relationships have been shown to have very positive long-term outcomes for young people. It is one of the most meaningful ways to impact someone's life," she said, adding that, "MYF has a vested interest in supporting and recording those successes even after the end of the project".
Glasgow Gentles made a call to persons who are interested in being a mentor to contact the MYF office. Mentors are trained in a one-day workshop and are matched with mentees through a process similar to speed dating.
Mentors and mentees are seated opposite each other and both are given a chance to conduct a short interview. They then prepare a list of the names of their three selected persons in order of highest compa-tibility. The final decision is made after all choices are collected to help find a perfect, or close match.
Twelve Montego Bay-based mentors have already been trained and matched under the project and have begun goal-setting activities to encourage smooth interaction. Mentorship activities include stress management, job seeking and learning time management, research on specific career goals and their associated earning potential.
An additional 30 mentors are needed for the Kingston cohort." We encourage all caring adults who are looking for ways to give back, to register to join MYF's mentor corps," she said.
Support services under the mentorship programme include organisational referrals and individual counselling. The Starbucks YUTE Work Project will facilitate job placement, tracking the employment of participants and ongoing mentorship support for at least one year.
The Starbucks YUTE Work Project is funded by Starbucks Foundation with support from Starbucks Jamaica and training partners, the HEART Trust/NTA. The MultiCare Youth Foundation is an associated charity of ICD Group Holdings Limited