Traverse City News and Events

Local YouthWork Program Wins National Award

Feb. 7, 2020

Representatives from Child and Family Services’ YouthWork Conservation Corps will travel to Washington D.C. Feb. 12 to accept one of four “Project of the Year” awards from The Corps Network. The program was recognized for its unique partnership with Traverse Bay Area Intermediate School District.

YouthWork teaches job and life skills to vulnerable youth age 16-26 as they complete vital conservation and service projects for local nonprofits and government agencies. In 2018, YouthWork partnered with TBAISD to engage students who have mild cognitive impairments, autism, or other physical or developmental disabilities or delays in the Adult Community Experience (ACE) Corps. During the 2018-2019 school year, YouthWork’s ACE Corps members collectively served more than 15,000 hours, completing vital projects for over 50 local nonprofits and government agencies. Members constructed nearly 100 picnic tables for the Michigan Department of Natural Resources and local parks and recreation departments, replaced over 2,000 feet of boardwalks and stream crossings, planted more than 10,000 trees, restored and constructed some 50 miles of trail including 1.5 miles of trail made ADA-rated accessible, and completed various other environmental, historic, and cultural preservation projects.

“As such a new program, YouthWork is humbled to be selected as the only Project of the Year in the state of Michigan and one of only four programs nationwide,” says Amanda Elliott, YouthWork AmeriCorps Director. In addition, YouthCorps member Sean Miles was a finalist to receive the LeaderCorps Youth of the Year award.

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