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Opportunities for Youth

Opportunities for Youth

Opportunities for Youth

Watts College of Public Service and Community Solutions

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Your gift to Opportunities for Youth will provide the resources for youth to overcome their current barriers, support them on an educational and/or career pathway, ensure their financial security and become contributing members to both their local communities and our Arizona economy.

Opportunities for Youth (OFY) is a collaborative partnership of 73 government agencies, nonprofit organizations, community colleges and employers launched in 2015 in response to the high rate of opportunity youth (OY), or youth aged 16-24, who are not in school and unemployed, in the Greater Phoenix Metropolitan Area. Since 2017, OFY has been an initiative of the Center for Human Capital and Youth Development in the Arizona State University Watts College of Public Service and Community Solutions.

Our initiative's goal is to lower the number of opportunity youth in the Greater Phoenix Metro Area. We approach our strategies and solutions using the collective impact model. No single problem can be addressed in isolation and for large-scale social change to occur, there needs to be a concerted effort among all cross-system stakeholders mobilized to take action. Therefore, OFY currently convenes our community partners, facilitates countywide systems change, and connects youth with resources and career/educational pathway programs.

In light of COVID-19, the number of OY in the Greater Phoenix Metro Area has spiked dramatically over the past six months. To illustrate, in 2019, the rate of youth disconnection in the Greater Phoenix Metro Area was 12.3% (or 70,300 youth ages 16-24). This rate today is estimated to be 27% or nearly 1 in 3 youth ages 16-24 who is not working or in school. This translates to over 140,000 youth in the Greater Phoenix Metro Area who are disconnected from work and school. With your support, we can help reverse this trend and give our youth the chance to succeed.

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