Consider writing a letter to your local newspaper

Hello and happy summer! As the season winds down and families and teachers get ready for kids to return to school, we’re thinking about the boost they’ll get soon, thanks to new investments from the Education Legacy Trust. 

During the last legislative session, a majority of lawmakers took the bold and necessary step of balancing our upside-down tax code by passing a tax on extraordinary capital gains. While our tax code is still far from fair, we’re finally starting to make the wealthy to pay their share. 

The capital gains tax will add an estimated $500 million a year to the Education Legacy Trust, making child care more accessible and affordable, enrolling more children in early learning programs, funding K-12 education, and providing more opportunities for students in community colleges and universities. Less than 1% of the state’s wealthiest residents will pay this tax, but every community in Washington will benefit.

Will you help us share this good news? We have to thank legislators for their hard work and commitment and ask them to keep working to make the tax code more equitable. 

We’re asking friends and partners to spread the word. Consider writing a letter to your local newspaper about our upside-down tax code and how the capital gains tax will start to fix it. 

If you need inspiration, here’s an excerpt from a letter that SEIU 925 leader Kathy Yasi recently submitted to the Seattle Times: 

In D37 we elected Sen. Saldana, Rep. Santos and Rep. Harris-Tally to lead us in finding ways to make sure everyone pays their fair share in our state.  I want to thank each of them for their hard work and dedication to find solutions to our unfair tax system.  And still, we have more work to do.

Thank you, Kathy, for taking the lead! And thanks in advance for your efforts to do the same. We appreciate you helping us share ways that a fairer tax code will benefit you and your neighbors — and to counter those who like the system just the way it is. Together, we’re making progress!

Letter writing talking points

Capital Gains Letter to the Editor Templates

Introduction: Say who you are and why you’re writing. 

For example:

“I’m a mom in Edmonds and I’m excited about more options for child care that are coming because this year legislators passed a capital gains tax on the super rich.”


“As a local business owner here in Spokane, the new capital gains tax passed by state legislators this year means my employees will have more options for child care and parents will see more investments in education.”

Body: Talk about the capital gains tax and why it’s important. 

For example:

“Childcare, preschool, and other education are funded by a new tax on capital gains, profits of more than $250,000 from the sale of stocks and bonds. Less than 1% of Washingtonians will pay this tax, but everyone will benefit.”


“The capital gains tax is a good step to making sure everyone is paying their share in taxes and supporting the services — like early learning and education — that we all benefit from.”


“We can make sure that every community has what they need to thrive when we insist that every person pays their share in taxes.” 

Closing: Thanks legislators for their vote or ask legislators to continue fixing our upside-down tax code

For example:

“But those with the most are still not paying their share in taxes. Our tax code is the most upside-down in the country, which means those with the least income are paying the highest share of their earnings in state and local taxes. We have to make this more fair. Our elected leaders should find more ways to make sure everyone pays their share.” 


“I want to thank (legislator name) for having the courage to vote for the capital gains tax. Our community needs investments like (example) that the tax will fund. I also appreciate your recognition that the tax code still isn’t fair and I encourage you to keep working on solutions like a wealth tax and a more equitable estate tax. Thank you!” 

Sign: Don’t forget to sign your name. Some papers also require the city where you live or your address. 

Important Notes

  • Most publications set a limit of 200 words for letters to the editor so please keep your submission under that. 
  • Find your local paper and information on how to contact them on our handy spreadsheet

Sample Letter

Dear editor, 

I’m writing to thank our state legislators, (name) and (name), who voted for a capital gains tax that requires the wealthy few to pay their share and starts to balance our upside-down tax code and.

Washington is dead last when it comes to tax fairness, but that changed this week when the capital gains tax went into effect. 

For too long, we’ve asked those who earn the least to pay the greatest share of their income in state and local taxes. We’ve asked them to foot most of the bill for schools, health care, transportation, and other services that benefit all of us. 

A capital gains tax will make sure that those with the most pay their share. It will fund child care, preschool, and K-12 education. All of us will benefit, especially parents who need accessible and affordable early learning and employers who need a reliable workforce. 

Lawmakers should keep working to make our tax code more fair. They must make sure everyone pays their share so we can all get the services we need. They should look for other ways, like a wealth tax, to ask those who have done well in Washington to do right by Washington. 



Sample letter

To the editor:

This year, we came together to tell legislators it was time to address our upside-down tax code and ask the wealthiest Washingtonians to pay their share. I applaud state legislators (name) and (name) for their vote for the capital gains tax. 

Washington is dead last when it comes to tax fairness, but that changed this week when the capital gains tax went into effect. 

For too long, we’ve asked those who earn the least to pay the greatest share of their income in state and local taxes. We’ve asked them to foot most of the bill for schools, health care, transportation, and other services that benefit all of us. 

We’ve been told there’s not enough in the state budget to fund everything we need for our communities to be healthy and prosperous. But that’s not true. There are plenty of resources in our state. We must ask those who have done well in Washington to do right by Washington. 

I/my organization is going to continue asking lawmakers to make our tax code more fair. I hope you’ll join me/us. When everyone pays their share, we can all get the services we need, including (name your organization’s service or issue).



September Noticias and Articles Relevant to Our Community

Celebrate Heritage and Diversity!

National Voter Registration Day 2021 is September 28!

Interested in finding out how you can help to get out the vote? Reach out to our amazing Volunteer coordinator Mandela Gardner for more information:

Register to Vote!

A virtual, community meeting will be held this Thursday, September 23 at 7:00. Please email us at to receive a Zoom link, or visit our project website for more information at

Viviendas económicas propuesto para el vecindario de Columbia City.  Visite nuestro sitio web para más información.

በኮሎምቢያ ሲቲ በዝቅተኛ ዋጋ ሊሰሩ የታሰቡ/ይታቀዱ ቤቶች:: ለተጨማረ መረጃ በድህረ ገፃችን ይመልከቱ::

Guriyeen la awoodi karo ayaa loo soo jeediyay Magaalada Columbia. Kaga bogo boggayaga wixii macluumaad dheeraad ah.

Chương trình nhà ở giá rẻ được đề xuất cho thành phố Columbia.  Xin vào Trang Web của chúng tôi tại để biết thêm thông tin

Sentinel Event Review of Police Response to 2020 Protests in Seattle

King County launches Child Care Financial Assistance (CCFA)

Updated vendor schedule for Plaza Roberto Maestas!

Free Tax Preparation & Expanded Child Tax Credit Information at El Centro de la Raza – Every Tuesday from 2-8 PM in our Centilia Cultural Center until September 28th

Articles of Interest

Consider Writing a Letter to Your Local Newspaper [and Some Instructions on How]

Democrats Look for Plan B After Blow on Immigration

International Day of Peace | United Nations | 2021 Theme: Recovering better for an equitable and sustainable world

Mayor Durkan Announces Fourth School Year of Free, Unlimited Transit Passes to Thousands of Seattle Students

Senator Murray Hails Senate Confirmation of David Estudillo as U.S. District Court Judge

There’s Noise, There’s Music. Estelita’s is Not Your Average Seattle Library — it’s a Space for Community.

Your Guide to Hispanic Heritage Month in Seattle

Cuentos From Our Programs and Community: September 2021

Sol, Sonrisas y Aventuras! Youth Scholars venture into Summer Hybrid Learning Programs at El Centro De La Raza

Summer Learning Program — Seattle and Federal Way: 6th – 8th-grade scholars enjoyed a field trip to the great outdoors!

With the glorious Pacific Northwest summer as our backdrop, the youth of the Summer Learning program were eager to venture on field trip excursions. Mask in hand and social distance guidelines in place, youth participated in four field trips carefully selected to give youth exposure to spaces they might not otherwise frequent.  Two of the most memorable field trips were a hiking excursion to Point Defiance Park in Tacoma, and a self-lead scavenger hunt tour of the University of Washington. “Just being out of the house is nice, and hanging out with friends make these the best field trips ever!” shared youth scholar, Jayson.

In order to be eligible for field trips, the youth had to attend 80% of virtual sessions held via Zoom during the week. #Earned! Centered on skill-building, youth attended three daily classes focus on math, language arts, and cultural enrichment. Though cameras reminded off, having in-person opportunity to meet created the comfort and open space for continuous participation. We look forward to transitioning scholars to the after-school program starting September 2021.

If you are interested in signing up your scholar, please contact our Youth Programs Manager, Liz Huizar M.A. at

A challenge to make ceviche for roommates inspired this Oaxacan immigrant to start his own Seattle business

The Business Opportunity Center of El Centro de la Raza would like to congratulate Marcos Arellano, owner of Shark Bite Ceviches and participant of our Food Incubator Program. We celebrate his hard work and his recognition in the Seattle Times! For more information about the Food Incubator Program, please contact Ivette Aguilera: or at (206) 883-1981.

Marcos Arellano, a vendor who started selling ceviche five years ago, stands near the cart where he sells his ceviches at the outdoor plaza located at El Centro de La Raza, 1660 S. Roberto Maestas Festival St. in Seattle Monday-Friday, 12 p.m – 7 p.m. (Ellen M. Banner / The Seattle Times)

El Centro de la Raza’s Small Business Development Program provides small business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs with workshops, business development advice, credit counseling, and access to a variety of resources all aiming to foster long-term financial stability and independence. Your donations ensure that we can continue to provide such valuable services.

Mil gracias Mick for all your hard work and the flowers!

“A garden should make you feel you’ve entered privileged space — a place not just set apart but reverberant — and it seems to me that, to achieve this, the gardener must put some kind of twist on the existing landscape, turn its prose into something nearer poetry.”

Michael Pollan

We are sad to say goodbye to Mick Duggan our Master Gardner, who is retiring after 15 years from his amazing work in the Cesar Chavez Demonstration Garden! Mick has toiled and tilled as our our volunteer Master Gardener since 2006! We have learned so much and will miss you! Best of luck in all your future endeavors, and may all your gardens grow!

Clínicas de vacunas e información de salud

Clínicas de vacunación COVID para estudiantes 5 – 11

Las familias que desean que sus estudiantes de 5 a 11 años reciban la vacuna COVID-19 tienen varias opciones, incluidas las clínicas de vacunas en las escuelas de Seattle Public Schools.

Datos que respaldan la necesidad de una dosis de refuerzo

Los estudios muestran que después de vacunarse contra el COVID-19, la protección contra el virus puede disminuir con el tiempo y ser menos efectiva para proteger contra la variante delta. Si bien la vacunación contra el COVID-19 para adultos de 65 años de edad o más sigue siendo efectiva para prevenir enfermedades graves, datos recientes ícono de pdf[4.7 MB, 88 páginas] sugieren que la vacunación es menos efectiva para prevenir la infección o casos más leves con síntomas. La evidencia que va surgiendo también muestra que entre los trabajadores de la salud y otros trabajadores de la primera línea, la efectividad de la vacuna contra el COVID-19 está disminuyendo con el tiempo. Este nivel de efectividad inferior se debe probablemente a la combinación de la disminución de la protección a medida que pasa el tiempo desde la vacunación (p. ej., inmunidad menguante) y una mayor infecciosidad de la variante delta.

Los datos de un pequeño ensayo clínico muestran que una dosis de refuerzo de la vacuna de Pfizer-BioNTech aumentó la respuesta inmunitaria entre los participantes del ensayo que completaron su esquema principal 6 meses antes. Con una mayor respuesta inmunitaria, las personas deberían tener una mayor protección contra el COVID-19, incluida la variante delta.

Necesita la vacuna?

Haga clic aquí para encontrar una ubicación de vacuna cerca de usted

Agosto Noticias y artículos relevantes para nuestra comunidad

Parque Memorial Santos Rodriguez

Este parque está nombrado en honor de Santos Rodriguez, un niño chicano de 12 años quien vivía en Dallas, Tejas. Durante la mañana del 24 de Julio de 1973, dos policías arrestaron a Santos y a su hermano David de 13 años, y los tomaron en un carro detrás de una estación de petróleo para cuestionamiento sobre el robo de una máquina de refrescos.Según el testimonio, el oficial Darrel Cain le avisó a Santos que el revólver contenía solo un cartucho, giró el cilindro y apuntó a la cabeza de Santos, urgiéndolo a “decir la verdad”; hizo clic el revólver pero no disparó. Como Santos reiteraba su inocencia, el policía otra vez apretó el gatillo y al instante mató a Santos mientras su hermano lo miraba.

Unos días después del asesinato, miles de personas protestaron en las calles de Dallas, descargando su enojo y su frustración. Luego una investigación determinó que las huellas de la escena no correspondieron a los de Santos ni su hermano. Cain fue condenado por asesinato con mala intención de un jurado de todas personas blancas, pero recibió una sentencia de solo 5 años; y solamente sirvió 2 ½. La comunidad estalló con furia sobre la brevedad de la sentencia, pero falló cada intento de tener el juicio reconsiderado.

Los trabajadores de El Centro de la Raza han llamado de nuestros niños parque Santos Rodríguez no sólo en la memoria de esta joven víctima del racismo, pero en desafío a la sociedad que le causó la muerte, y la confianza de que vamos a ganar en nuestros esfuerzos para acabar con el racismo. Utilizamos su nombre no de luto, sino para conmemorar el día en que creamos una sociedad verdaderamente democrática, que asegure la igualdad de derechos y una vida plena y digna para todos los pueblos. Se nombró este parque Santos Rodriguez Memorial Park para recordarles a todos de la importancia de respetar, querer, cuidar y proteger a todos los niños del mundo.

Updates to the Santos Rodriquez story:
Dallas Police Chief Apologizes for a 12-Year-Old Boy’s 1973 Killing by an Officer

In Memory of Santos Rodriquez: Almost 50 years after his murder . . .

King County launches Child Care Financial Assistance (CCFA)

Classes and New Program Enrollments – English

Introduction to Computers

We are excited to present an upcoming opportunity — Introduction to Computer course. This course is conducted in Spanish and is intended for those individuals who have little to no computer skills. The classes will take place Tuesdays and Thursdays evenings from 5:30-7:00 pm, November 23 – December 16, via Zoom. In addition, we are able to loan laptops/hotspots to participants who do not have access to these.

Neighborhood House: Project SCOPE

If you know a student or family member between the ages of 14 – 24, who is refusing to go or is behind in school; is thinking about dropping out, or generally struggling with direction, please feel free to send an email to: Angel Berry; or call/text: 206.739.3771

Project SCOPE, one of many Youth and Family Services offered through Neighborhod House, is designed for those who have left or struggle in the traditional classroom. Located in Kent, WA, this program helps youth set and achieve educational and career goals. We identify the barriers together and then provide support services to aid in basic needs, such as food access and transportation to school. Youth receive mentoring support to complete secondary and post-secondary education. Staff partner with schools, re-engagement centers, and various GED programs. Based on their skills and career interests, youth gain job-readiness skills through paid internships with our employer partners.

The goal of the program is to support youth and remove barriers to them graduating from high school and college and will provide support until they are age 24.  There are no citizenship requirements.

If you need Spanish help interpretation, you can call Jonny to help get connected! 206-376-0725.

Free Bilingual Legal Phone Consultations!

There are free bilingual legal clinics with volunteer attorneys from the Law Office of Schroeter Goldmark & Bender and the Latina/o Bar Association of Washington. Sign-up for consultations is on a first-come, first-served basis. To sign-up, please call 206-233-1230 and leave a message with your name, phone number, and a brief description of your legal issue. Staff will try their best to find an appointment time for you to call back and speak to an attorney. This is not a guarantee of an appointment. Space is limited! Click here for more details.

Second week of every month through November:
February 8-12; March 8-12; April 12-16; May 10-14; June 6-11; July 12-16; August 9-13; September 6-10; October 11-15; November 8-12

Consultations are held via telephone only on a first-come, first-served basis. SGB and LBAW will work to pair people with attorneys on the week of the clinic at a date and time that works for both parties. Please call 206-233-1230 and leave a message.

A list of additional legal resources can be found here.

August Noticias and Articles Relevant to Our Community

Santos Rodriguez Memorial Park

This park is named in honor of Santos Rodriguez, a 12-year old Chicano boy who lived in Dallas, Texas. On July 24, 1973, Santos and his 13-year old brother David were taken in a squad car behind a gas station to question a burglarized soda machine. According to testimony, Officer Darrel Cain warned that his gun contained only one cartridge, spun the cylinder, and pointed it at the back of Santos’s head, urging him to “tell the truth.” Santos maintained his innocence; the gun clicked once and did not fire. After Santos reiterated his innocence, Cain again pulled the trigger, and this time Santos was killed instantly, as his brother looked on.

Thousands of protesters marched through downtown Dallas just days after the shooting, venting their anger and frustration. An investigation later determined that the fingerprints at the scene of the burglary did not match those of Santos or his brother. Cain was tried and convicted of murder with malice by an all-white jury, but he was sentenced to a mere 5 years in prison for this heinous crime; he only served 2 ½. Outrage over the brevity of his sentence erupted from the community, but all attempts to have the case reviewed failed.

The workers of El Centro de la Raza have named our children’s park Santos Rodriguez not only in memory of this young victim of racism, but in defiance of the society that caused his death, and confident that we will win in our efforts to do away with racism. We use his name, not in mourning but to commemorate the day when we create a society that is truly democratic, that assures equal rights and a dignified, fulfilling life for all peoples. This park was named Santos Rodriguez Memorial Park to remind us all of the importance of respecting, loving, caring for, and protecting all of the world’s children.

Updates to the Santos Rodriquez story:
Dallas Police Chief Apologizes for a 12-Year-Old Boy’s 1973 Killing by an Officer

In Memory of Santos Rodriquez: Almost 50 years after his murder . . .

Please participate in this survey from our friends at ArtsFund

ArtsFund: Covid Cultural Impact Study (CCIS) – Public Participation Survey

Please help support ArtsFund by taking their short Public Participation Survey – responses you share will provide important information to plan for reopening, guide future operations, and inform future investment.

ArtsFund is an organization with a history of providing timely and quality data to the sector to better advocate conversations in the public and private sectors. The data collected will become a baseline for future conversations about the impact of COVID-19. Your participation will help to ensure that the data being collected is robust, meaningful, and relevant. You all know that our sector has permanently changed. This study attempts to capture some of that change and serve as a starting point for conversations about how to operate in the future.   Thank you in advance for completing this survey and sharing it with your friends.

The result will help to a stronger foundation for important conversations we will be having for years to come. Thank you for being a voice for the sector and thank you for supporting the mission of ArtsFund.  

King County launches Child Care Financial Assistance (CCFA)

Updated vendor schedule for Plaza Roberto Maestas!

Free Tax Preparation & Expanded Child Tax Credit Information at El Centro de la Raza – Every Tuesday from 2-8 PM in our Centilia Cultural Center until September 28th

Articles of Interest

UnidosUS President and CEO: For Equitable Recovery, Dual Infrastructure Packages Must Move Forward Together

El Centro de la Raza’s Softball Team

“It’s a family affair.” Veronica, our fearless softball captain and El Centro de la Raza’s Property Manager says about El Centro de la Raza’s softball team. El Centro de la Raza has been participating in a softball league organized by Urban League for three years now since 2018. In 2020 we did not have a season due to COVID-19, and the teams are very grateful to be playing again. The league is full of teams working in human services and cultural organizations working exceptionally hard throughout the pandemic. The other teams are United Indians of All Tribes, Urban League Metropolitan Seattle, and International Community Health Services.

The softball league is a welcome return and an essential outlet for individuals and organizations. It is also a joyful way to network and get to know the other organizations, creating multi-cultural unity and connections that allow us to get to know the faces of the organizations we are working with. Veronica mentions that it has helped El Centro de la Raza vaccine clinic outreach immensely. Our El Centro de la Raza team includes some of our current employees, past employees, and families. It’s a way to keep in touch and continue to build our community. At the end of July, we were excited to beat the undefeated United Indians of All Tribes team! Veronica says we keep a competitive spirit, but it’s all about camaraderie and getting to know each other.

Cuentos From Our Programs and Community: August

Sixty nine students graduate from the José Martí Child Development Center!

We are proud to announce that a total of sixty nine children successfully completed their final year of preschool and graduated from the José Martí Child Development Center (JMCDC)! This was an especially challenging year with the pandemic. Still, the students worked hard all year long and made outstanding progress in all areas of development (social/emotional, physical, cognitive, and language). We are so proud of all of the students, and they are now ready for their next adventure: kindergarten!

Due to the continuing COVID-19 pandemic, we were unable to hold a community graduation celebration as we have done in the past, so the teachers planned safe and creative events for each classroom to honor their graduates. At JMCDC on Beacon Hill, we celebrated our sixty three graduates with walk-up or “drive-through” events where the students received a certificate and gift; and parents could stop to take pictures with their graduates. JMCDC at Hirabayashi Place is decorated with their six graduates’ pictures and artwork and celebrated in their classrooms.

We are so thankful to all of our students and families for your support in helping to keep our program running, and safe and healthy for our students. And mil gracias to ECEAP and Seattle Preschool Program for making it possible for many of our students to attend preschool, as well as the DCYF and City of Seattle subsidy program that provided discounts throughout the year to further support our families. Last but not least, a BIG congratulations to our graduates for a great year — we will miss you all and wish you the best of luck in kindergarten!

Robotics – Bahlam Bots Program

Competition Ready for 2021-2022 Leagues!

Echale Ganas, scholars! Upon completion of the robotics program, scholars received a laptop/tablet duo to support their future academic endeavors.

Normally the Bahlam Bots Robotic program spends the year preparing and then competing in either the First — Lego League or First — Robotics Competition. With this year’s changes to the league, our program shifted to prepare scholars to be competition-ready for the following year. This break from competition allowed scholars to take their Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) preparation in a new direction. Which ultimately created a much-needed community. Scholars participated in a number of at-home challenges that focused on mechanical and logical thinking but also worked to strengthen soft skills such as presenting/giving a presentation and public speaking.  For all their hard work, scholars earned a laptop as a means of investment for their future. These future robotics professionals are not only ready to compete next year but are ready for bright careers!

Summer Learning 2021- Federal Way & Seattle, Zoomies meet during first field trip!

Zoomies on Scavenger Hunt

Participants in our afterschool program and newly enrolled scholars entering middle school began this year’s Summer Learning Program on July 2. Fondly name the Zoomies, our scholars have made the best of participating remotely. However, the excitement of getting to go, together on a field trip was physical! Energy and laughter filled long empty halls of El Centro de la Raza, as scholars participated in a scavenger hunt that led them all over the building to learn the story of the over 100-year-old historic building.

Scholars also had a chance to participate in art projects and had a chance to try on archeological hats in exploring minerals and rocks. This became a theme, symbolic of the foundation our scholars exhibited for the rest of the summer.

Although academic classes will continue via Zoom, scholars will have a chance to participate in three more field trips that will ultimately help combat summer learning loss.

Job Readiness Training

Our students, Juana Mas, Dallanary Santos, Andy Castro, and Alessia Manay enrolled in the job training program at El Centro de la Raza’s Business Opportunity Center, have finished their internships with Launch 206! The focus of the program was teaching the participants how to be on-the-water and general seamanship skills. The focus of the program was to help in preparing the students with the skills necessary for careers in the maritime industry. Students gained real-life experience through field trips, guest speakers, and information sessions. In addition, each student received a stipend of $1,000! Check out some highlights of their work here!

Seattle Public Schools is currently transitioning the portal for this year’s Youth Maritime Accelerator program. If you are interested in learning more about the upcoming project please call Danna Villar Cardenas YJRT (Youth Job Readiness Training temp coordinator) Phone number: (206) 887-3574 or email:

Tomando Control De Su Salud

Kathlene, a participant in our Tomando control de su salud (Taking Control of Your Health) program, gave us a wonderful testimony of her time with us. She said, “I’ve applied all that I have learned from these classes. The biggest thing I took away from the course was the vital information regarding my health. Along with the information, I also shared my experiences with those around me daily. I was consistently recognized for my progress within the course. I am currently trying to apply all that I have learned in this course and in my routine to improve my quality of life. For this, I give thanks to the people who have formulated this wonderful course and to El Centro de la Raza for all their help.”

Launch and Grow Your Business

Jeanett Quintanilla is a licensed lawyer from Peru and is fascinated with the law and her community. Her passion for serving others continued once she moved to the United States and volunteered at the Latino/a Bar Association of Washington legal clinic. She then became a certified bilingual paralegal in Washington state. Jeanett participated in the entrepreneurship course Launch and Grow Your Business through the Business Opportunity Center (BOC). After graduating from the course, she was given one-on-one business advising through BOC on permits and advertisement online. Now, Jeanett is the owner of Manu Group LLC – a professional services company that offers paralegal, Spanish translation, and empowerment workshop services to the community. To learn more about her business and services, please contact Jeanett at or (206) 778-6407.

Youth Job Readiness Training

Students enrolled in El Centro de la Raza’s Youth Youth Job Readiness Training program finishing up the end of their session

Finding a job can be a challenge for youth. They must determine what careers are available, their interests, and what skills they need to develop. Another problem among youth is the lack of skills, experience, and education that make them eligible for the workforce. The Youth Job Readiness Training Program is tackling these two problems with a solution: training youth about competent job training, financial literacy, internship placement, and academic support for future education. The program runs through the Business Opportunity Center and recruits 15 to 20-year-old high school students to attend a year-long training course. In addition to technical courses, the program teaches students networking skills, presentation skills, and project development.

This year has been a success despite the pandemic—We learned how to be together in a virtual setting. Every Wednesday, we had the opportunity to share not only knowledge but also emotional support. In addition, students also receive field training at partner organizations. As part of their training, one group this year will be building a boat with the Center of Wooden Boats through Launch 206. One student has already finished her internship with the Port of Seattle for a consecutive year, and another one is working with Seattle Goodwill. Also, a group of students is doing their internship at the Consulate of Guatemala and another one with El Centro de la Raza. Some organizations are providing stipends and school credit for internship completion.

So far, the program has succeeded very well in one of its goals: to help youth find employment. Most of our graduates now have jobs or are attending college, a remarkable achievement for our program. Graduates have found jobs in a variety of fields, from construction to customer service. We are happy to see our students enjoy the knowledge and assistance that we provide and how much we can learn from them. As the number of students willing to explore the employment experience grows, we will continue to have more success stories that show the importance of this program in helping to build the Beloved Community.

Please click here to make a donation to support the wonderful work we do to change the lives of children, youth, and families in the community.