Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.
The largest ethnic demographic in Salinas is Latino. Spanish is spoken in over 60% of our homes. Pockets of poverty hover at nearly 50% in areas. Our biggest labor industry is agriculture that pays an annual salary of $13k. Our schools were taken over by the State for continual failure to meet standards. In 2008 we lost 28 lives to gang violence. These are the conditions our children live in, and what they experience everyday when going to school. SPLLC hires youth who live this, who have moved into higher education, and can share their experiences with the younger generation. We build on the skills and experiences that these young people grew to become successful, and support them teaching students how to navigate schooling their community
Impact: What is the impact of the work to date? Also describe the projected future impact for the coming years.
Since its creation the SPLLC has placed nearly $60,000 in the pockets of Salinas youth residents. 54 students, athletes, artists, and community advocates have grown and developed their skillsets with the support of the program and its leadership. Children and families not only rely on, but believe in the community responsive work that has been created as an outcome of the project because of the educational, behavioral, and communication growth of the participants. We have seen students off to universities, graduate school, and full time work in community non profits and the educational sector. We support over 100 students a day, at 2 community sites, and developed an 8 week long summer program that feeds, educates, engages, supports, and travels with 50 students during their time away from the classroom that is in its third year of implementation. We are now an expectation in education.
Spread Strategies: Moving forward, what are the main strategies for scaling impact?
One of the key milestones was the adoption of 2 City of Salinas job classifications that provide employment opportunities for community youth. This has institutionalized the participation and role youth play in their local government employment pool, and how they can transform and broaden the scope of local government work. While the job classification was created specifically for the Library Department, there is a potential for City departments such as legal, public safety, or engineering to use these jobs to incorporate youth voice and perspective in their work as they grow our neighborhoods