Group of young adults talking and working on laptops

About the Program

HELP USA’s Pathways program is a technology-focused initiative to provide educational and career opportunities for young people in East New York.

The program targets individuals aged 5 to 18 living in HELP USA facilities and the surrounding community, focusing on those attending Community District 5 schools. This district faces various socioeconomic challenges, including high poverty rates, crime, gang violence, and predictors of homelessness, resulting in limited access to digital tools, technology curriculum, college preparation, and career readiness.

The program targets individuals aged 5 to 18 living in HELP USA facilities and the surrounding community, focusing on those attending Community District 5 schools. This district faces various socioeconomic challenges, including high poverty rates, crime, gang violence, and predictors of homelessness, resulting in limited access to digital tools, technology curriculum, college preparation, and career readiness.

Bridging the Gap

Pathways helps bridge the digital gap by offering computer skills training, increasing tech skills, website design, coding fundamentals, and college prep courses. It also provides mentoring, career counseling, and job readiness training to empower disadvantaged youth with the skills needed for post-secondary education and better employment prospects. By addressing achievement gaps in Community District 5, the program aims to break the cycle of poverty and housing insecurity while ensuring educational success for underprivileged and at-risk students.

The program is essential for students in Community District 5 schools, which face significant challenges and have some of the lowest overall ratings in the city. Students in this district are affected by socioeconomic issues, including poverty, low educational attainment among adults, high unemployment rates, and ongoing social problems such as crime and homelessness. As a result, these students often struggle academically, earning lower scores on standardized exams than the state averages.

The program addresses the growing gap in access to digital resources and educational opportunities in disadvantaged neighborhoods by equipping young people with the skills necessary to overcome socioeconomic challenges. By providing computer literacy, college prep, and career readiness support, the program empowers participants to pursue higher education and secure well-paying, long-term employment, ultimately breaking the cycle of poverty and housing insecurity.

By offering a positive and safe environment for learning, the program aims to close achievement gaps, increase college and career opportunities, ensure brighter futures for students in underserved communities, and contribute to the community's overall well-being. 

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