Chafee, mayors announce youth employment program

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Gov. Lincoln Chafee and Rhode Island mayors announced an initiative on Friday to get jobs for more than 1,000 teenagers while they’re out of school for the summer.

The Comprehensive Community Action Program, funded by the Governor’s Workforce Board and the federal Temporary Cash Assistance for Needy Families program, offers nearly 20 employment programs in conjunction with nonprofit organizations throughout the state.

“It is really important experience to get to know what it’s like to be responsible, to be punctual, to be diligent and to show up every day,” Chafee said.

The jobs range from green construction to clerical work.

“You’re going to have kids from all walks of life getting lifelong experiences that they’re going to remember and value for the rest of their life,” said Cranston Mayor Allan Fung.

The program was set up to alleviate youth unemployment. It was about 30 percent last year.

“It’s a great win-win for the city and for the young people. And for the state in this program,” Chafee said.

The state pays nonprofits like CCAP to place the kids and compensate them for the work they do. For CCAP, the reward is sending kids into the real world with real skills.

“It gives them the opportunity to gain experience for further employment,” said CCAP Cranston Site Manager Meghan Nhar.

Those interested in the program are advised to contact their local YouthWorks411 system or any participating community-based organizations.

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