Youth Services at Restoration
All young people need attention, support, and structure in their lives. At Restoration we believe that all youth can succeed by cultivating their individual strengths and forming supportive relationships with peers and mentors. Through programs specifically tailored for young people of color, Restoration provides opportunities for young individuals to enhance their academic, career, and leadership skills. Our programs focus on:
In collaboration with A-List Education, a well-known tutoring service, Restoration offers a special SAT preparation and college access program for high school juniors. This free program provides 36 hours of classroom instruction, three proctored practice exams, assistance with selecting colleges, and assistance with completing financial aid applications. In 2018 over 100 youth took advantage of these services. Our education team also works intensively with youth that are not in school and do not have a high school diploma to guide them back on track, either in school or an alternative vocational track.
Restoration introduces young people between the ages of 18-24 to the world of work by offering 14-week internships in a wide range of businesses and industries. Participants receive career and employment coaching from our trained staff. They also participate in weekly workshops where they learn about different aspects of the employment experience, including proper workplace behavior and attitudes. Our staff provide worksite supervision for the duration of the internship and help young people secure job placements after completing the internship.
Currently we offer weekly information sessions where we discuss the above-mentioned programs as well as other programs available throughout the city. Attendees learn about vocational training opportunities in IT, technology, cyber security, web development and other areas. There are also opportunities for individuals who work well with their hands such as low voltage cable installation, woodworking, drivers’ license training (Class D and CDL) and security guard training.
Restoration’s one-of-a-kind Youth Arts Academy provides pre-professional arts instruction to young people aged 3-18 years. The Academy creates a safe haven for youth to develop as both artists and leaders in a community where poverty, crime, and under-performing schools present tangible obstacles for youth to succeed. Offerings include Ballet, Contemporary, Hip-Hop and African Dance; as well as African Drumming and Theater. Some 150 youth take part in the Academy’s programs each year, with many students enrolling in multiple classes.
Restoration seeks to encourage young people to develop leadership and life skills, empathy for the needs of others, and a sense of connectedness, purpose and efficacy. We recently launched our Volunteer program that will exposes youth to a variety of positions and experiences in community development. Youth can even form their own service projects. Since 2015, we have awarded the Elsie E. Richardson Scholarship to young people who have exemplified the values of community service. Named after an activist and social reformer who strived tirelessly to improve the quality of life in Bedford-Stuyvesant, the award pays homage to Ms. Richardson’s legacy of civic mindedness and public service. The $1,000 prize is awarded to two college-bound students each year on the basis of their commitment to community service as well as their resilience in the face of obstacles in their own lives.
We believe that every young person deserves the chance to succeed in life. That’s why we offer a broad range of services encompassing education, employment, cultural enrichment and civic engagement, that together help young people build a foundation for lifelong well-being.