HUD Archives: News Releases

HUD No. 00-271
Further Information: For Release
In the Washington, DC area: 202/708-0685 Wednesday
Or contact your local HUD office September 27, 2000

Youth Grant Summary
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WASHINGTON – Nearly 3,000 high school dropouts between the ages of 16 and 24 will be trained this year as construction workers while building and renovating low-income housing, thanks to the U.S. Housing and Urban Development, which today awarded about $40 million in Youthbuild Program grants.

HUD Secretary Andrew Cuomo made the announcement during a series of telephone conference calls to grant recipients from some of the 78 organizations in 33 states and the District of Columbia.

"This program gives new hope to high school dropouts, enabling them to build housing for families in need while building new careers and new lives for themselves," Cuomo said. "Through these non-profit organizations, HUD’s Youthbuild Program is helping young people work their way out of poverty."

Dorothy Stoneman, president of Youthbuild USA said, "Under Secretary Cuomo’s leadership and thanks to the superb work of HUD staff, the Youthbuild Program is successfully bringing thousands of previously disconnected young adults into the workforce and into community development in America’s poorest communities. These students produce affordable housing in their communities while they gain a skill, a GED, a job and a new lease on life. Though the transformation of individuals in the program seems miraculous, it happens all the time."

The grants will fund classes to help the young men and women receive high school equivalency diplomas and provide on-the-job training in homebuilding skills that will qualify them for careers as construction workers. Youthbuild participants would have a hard time finding good jobs without the program, because they lack high school diplomas and job skills.

The Youthbuild participants acquire their construction skills by building and renovating single-family homes, town homes and residential housing units. The units are then sold to low- and moderate-income families, providing much needed affordable housing. Since the program’s inception in 1992, about 7,250 homes will have been built or rehabbed by the students.

A total of 273 applicants around the country competed for the grants. Applicants are public or private non-profit agencies or authorities, state or local governments, or any other organization eligible to provide education and employment training under other federal employment training programs.

HUD’s grants are expected to attract another $28.5 million from outside sources in cash and in-kind resources.

Because of the program’s past success President Clinton requested $75 million for it in his fiscal year 2001 budget. However, the House has cut the President’s request by $30 million and the Senate by $15 million.

More than $215 million in grants have been awarded by the program since it began.


Content Archived: December 13, 2009