Past Programs and Initiatives

A sampling of New Ways’ initiatives over the past 30 years

Foster Youth Pathways To Employment

Youth At The Crossroads

As an extension of the Youth Transition Action Team initiative and a series of statewide meetings focused on improving the career trajectories of transitioning foster youth, New Ways delivered the Youth at the Crossroads convening. This two-day conference, held May 21 and 22, 2012 in Los Angeles, was designed and facilitated by New Ways to Work and sponsored by the city and county of Los Angeles Workforce Investment Boards, the San Diego Workforce Partnership, the Riverside County Workforce Investment Board, and the city of Los Angeles Community Development Department. The primary purpose of the meeting was to encourage departments and agencies to work together and leverage each others' services to better assist youth who choose to stay in foster care beyond the age of 18 under the Foster Connections Act. Two hundred and seventy attendees representing counties across the state – with representation spanning from Sacramento to the Bay Area to San Diego -- gathered to focus on the implementation of extended foster care in California. Child welfare and workforce agencies throughout California met to honestly evaluate current practices and uncover ways to move forward with a new outlook on effectively serving foster youth, especially focused on older youth in care.

The planning, preparation, design, development and execution of all conference details, speakers, content, and participant recruitment was led, facilitated, and conducted by New Ways to Work, working closely with a sub-committee of the LA WIB’s Youth Council and an implementation team of staff and leadership. New Ways is now engaged in working with the partners to design and develop resources to support an ongoing capacity-building infrastructure in the county, and to implement key policy recommendations uncovered at the meeting at the local, state and national levels.

To read the Youth at the Crossroads report, Click Here.

To access the Youth at the Crossroads resource binder, Click Here.

To access the Youth at the Crossroads agenda package, Click Here.


Youth Transition Action Team Initiative

In partnership with Casey Family Programs, New Ways supported cross-disciplinary teams in counties across California in their efforts to create a comprehensive, integrated, and sequenced set of services and support to ensure that foster youth will be prepared to achieve success as adults. Teams composed of representatives from child welfare, workforce, education, probation, youth, and others bring together and leverage the approaches, strategies, and resources of multiple efforts related to successful youth transition. Counties focused on developing and implementing strategies to improve youth outcomes in education, employment, and permanence for transitioning foster youth.


Foster Youth Access and Success

Through a grant from the San Francisco Foundation, New Ways worked with county teams in the San Francisco Bay Area including county Office of Education staff, district-level Career/Technical Education leaders, social workers, Independent Living Skills Program staff, and others from Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, San Francisco, and San Mateo counties to improve foster youth access to career development opportunities in area high schools.


Foster Youth Summer Jobs Plus

Through a grant from the Jewish Community Foundation of Los Angeles, New Ways, in partnership with the LA YTAT, assisted 100 foster youth in connecting their 2009 summer jobs experience to their career and educational goals as part of Foster Youth Summer Jobs Plus.


California Independent Living Program Transformation Breakthrough Series Collaborative

This BSC assisted nine California county teams in putting the new ILP vision of Permanence, Education, and Employment for transitioning foster youth into action.  This BSC was sponsored by the California Child Welfare Co-Investment Partnership and was coordinated and implemented by New Ways to Work and the Child & Family Policy Institute of California. Counties selected to participate in this 18-month collaborative devised and tested approaches to improve ILP services in order to make rapid changes in California's ILP system.



Local Systems

School to Work Intermediary Project and the Intermediary Network

New Ways worked with Jobs for the Future and a number of national and local partners to launch and deliver the School to Work Intermediary Project in 1998.  With the sunset of the School to Work Opportunities Act in 2002, network members elected to transition to a member supported, national peer professional development network and engaged New Ways as its facilitating partner. Since 2002, the Intermediary Network -  a national association of leading education, workforce, and youth development intermediary organizations working in local communities to ensure youth success – have come together to define and promote Intermediary work, and improve local practice. Network members connect schools, communities, government agencies, philanthropy, workplace partners, and youth organizations to improve outcomes for youth and help build the future workforce. New Ways served as a lead partner and the primary technical assistance provider for the School-to-Work Intermediary Project and served as the facilitating partner for the Network for more than a decade. The INet guidebooks, framing tools, definitional materials, and strategic support processes were designed, developed and published byNew Ways. The INet continues today as a small, self-managed network of local youth workforce intermediaries.


City of Chicago: Youth Career Development Centers and Regional Collaboratives

New Ways provided analysis and recommendations to the Chicago Department of Family Support Services to increase the effectiveness of the city’s Youth Career Development Centers and Regional Collaboratives.


Health Careers Academy Research and Recommendations

SF Mayor’s Transitional Youth Task Force

Innovations Symposium

JobsFirst New York City: Youth Intermediary Development

School to Career Collaborative Support and Training

New Ways Workers 



Youth Councils 

The Youth Council Institute (YCI)

New Ways provides strategic support to assist Youth Councils (formed under the Workforce Investment Act) with building their capacity to provide high-quality services to the young people they serve, and to expand their scope beyond their regulatory responsibilities. New Ways provides consulting services, capacity-building and technical assistance for local youth councils and their partners that include facilitated strategic planning, training, workshops, asset mapping, and the collection and dissemination of quality practices. New Ways provides assistance councils interested in developing program quality improvements in their youth programs, applying the All Youth-One System principles to their work, increasing the employer engagement capacity of their program operators, and developing work-ready skills standards and certifications. The project received the Architect of Change, Innovation in Customer Service Award from the National Association of Workforce Agencies for the work conducted through the California Youth Council Institute.


To download the Youth Council Institute guidebook, Click Here.

City of Chicago: Transition of WIA Youth Services, Program Design, Quality Improvement

New Ways served as the lead partner on the Transition Services Team engaged by the city of Chicago to assist in moving Workforce Investment Act youth programs from the Workforce Department to the Department of Children and Family Services. This multifaceted project involved working with a wide range of departmental representatives, city staff, youth-serving nonprofits, and a subcommittee of representatives of the Chicago Workforce Board and Youth Council. Components of the project included the definition and delivery of capacity building to the nonprofits and self-assessment activities


National Youth Council Institute  

California Youth Council Institute

Sonoma County Work-Ready Certification  

San Diego Youth Resource Mapping

Youth Opportunity Centers Technical Assistance and Support



Work-Based Learning

Kansas City Work-based Learning Toolkit

California Employer and Labor Engagement Tools and Materials

California Work-Based Learning Toolkit


High Schools

Diploma Plus California: Selection and Implementation

Sonoma County Career Development Strategic Planning

Communities and Schools for Career Success

Bay Area School Executive Leadership Initiative

California School to Career Action Network

Communities and Schools for Career Success



Youth with Disabilities 

Resource Data Base for Youth with Disabilities

Improving Transition Outcome for Youth with Disabilities