YOUTHBUILD USA

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The very name itself, YouthBuild, celebrates what the youth of the world can build -- and quietly over the last 35 years, these social entrepreneurs have built quite a bit.
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At a moment in my life when nothing was going right, I found YouthBuild and began a journey that has brought me to the place I am right now.
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The town hall meeting was filled with important people from New York who were talking, shaking hands and taking pictures.
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We believe young people born into difficult circumstances are an enormous, untapped resource for humanity.
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Playing Batman and Robin as a child is one of the fondest, perhaps most innocent, memories I recall.
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In life, we all make choices, whether good or bad. These choices always lead us somewhere, some good, and some bad.
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I attended YouthBuild Brockton in the fall of 2007 because I wanted to get my life on the right track. I had a long history of smoking marijuana and selling drugs throughout the Boston area.
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As Brandon Menjares approached the podium for his YouthBuild Just-A-Start graduation speech, I fully expected to be blown away.
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I went from not knowing anything about construction to building hospitals, banks, and luxury condos. I was given the chance to help build the very city I grew up in.
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When I was a ten-year-old girl growing up in Colombia, I wanted to become a zoologist and research great apes like Dian Fossey after watching a TV show featuring her work in the mountains of Rwanda.
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While running the streets, I realized that I was trapped in a vicious cycle that I knew had to be broken. I became involved with the courts and I was also a victim of violence. I realized that I needed serious change in my life.
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Opportunities go to those who have the necessary skills. At YouthBuild programs, we clearly communicate labor market realities to young adults so they know what occupations are in demand and how to obtain the appropriate credentials to advance vocationally.
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There is something I learned in YouthBuild that I constantly pass on to others: Do not be afraid of learning more; do not be afraid of growing more; do not be afraid of success.