New Ways to Work and California Opportunity Youth Network (COYN) announced today that they have received a grant in the amount of $400,000 from the Walter S. Johnson Foundation to be awarded over two years. An alliance formed to help the most vulnerable populations, New Ways to Work and COYN will support transition-aged foster youth and other young people facing extraordinary challenges.
“Through our shared commitment to building opportunities for those who often live in communities with minimal resources, New Ways to Work and COYN are incredibly grateful for the generosity of the Walter S. Johnson Foundation,” said Robert Sainz, President of New Ways to Work. “Through a creative, innovative, and compassionate approach, we design and facilitate programs that help young adults chart paths to self-sufficiency.”
About The Partnership
This partnership builds upon an initial investment of Walter S. Johnson and Tipping Point Foundations to develop a Transition-Age Youth Workforce Initiative to provide Bay Area Workforce Development Boards with information about quality practices, policy advocacy, and cross-sector capacity building to improve their ability to serve transition age youth. With a focus on foster, probation, and homeless youth living throughout California, the New Ways/COYN partnership involves a collaboration with local practitioners and system providers. Through assessment and the strategic execution of services, the alliance improves the delivery of workforce, career readiness, and support services for the emerging workforce. These joint efforts improve practice and provide critical information and knowledge. By connecting national, state and local policy leaders to proven youth development techniques, the collaboration prepares young people to participate in an ever-evolving economy.
“COYN is thrilled to expand the number of organizations who we serve as we convene and formalize a regional collaborative network of youth workforce intermediaries and practitioners in Northern California,” said Joseph Herrity, Chair of COYN. “Together, we will foster practice and policy improvements for the youth workforce system, thereby improving employment outcomes for youth and young adults.”
With a constant focus on strengthening COYN’s internal infrastructure, the grant will help replicate effective strategies utilized by the Los Angeles Opportunity Youth Collaborative (LA OYC) to achieve collective impact and enhance external partnerships with public agencies and other allied organizations.
The California Opportunity Youth Network (COYN) was established in 2015 with support from The Aspen Institute’s Forum for Community Solutions to bring communities together to advocate for the large number of disconnected youth in California. COYN members represent geographical areas across the state with high numbers of disconnected youth, including Alameda, San Francisco, Santa Clara, Los Angeles, San Diego, and the Del Norte and Tribal lands region. COYN facilitates statewide communication, organizing, and policy advocacy to remedy systemic inequities affecting Opportunity Youth across California—working to transform systems, policies, investments, and narratives to ensure all youth and young adults in California have the opportunity to flourish in adulthood. COYN is partnering with the California Workforce Development Board (CWDB) to advance a federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) waiver to increase access for systems-involved youth to WIOA-funded programs and services and co-sponsoring state-level legislation (SB 61, Hurtado) to provide resources to individuals experiencing barriers to participation in workforce training programs.
To learn more about COYN, please visit https://www.caloyn.org/.