By Mike Wimmer, GSDC Intern
What do you think of when you hear the words “summer” and “youth”? For many of us, we think of bike rides, swim lessons, spending time with friends, and freedom from homework. What we may not think about is the difficulties summer can bring for area at-risk youth. Career Solutions (formerly known as Stearns-Benton Employment & Training Council) has developed the CareerONE program aimed at helping area at-risk youth excel both in and out of the classroom. Since 2000, the CareerONE program has provided Central Minnesota youth, ages 14-17, realistic and positive work readiness skills in a safe, nurturing, and learning-rich environment. This program also helps prevent participating youth from regressing academically when are away from the classroom over the summer months.
Thanks to support from CentraCare Health and the United Way of Central Minnesota, the CareerONE program was able to provide services to 100 youth in St. Cloud. An abbreviated, two-week long camp also helped serve 20 youths in Cold Spring, and 10 youths in Paynesville this summer. Every year the program strives to improve in order to better serve area youth and help them achieve success in all facets of their life. Read more about the CareerONE program here. To view a short video highlighting some of the activities participants were able to engage in, please see below.