Skip to content

Helping Foster Kids Find Employment Opportunities

fm=f_10969
fm=f_6092

Each One Help One CITY OF LIFE FOUNDATION

Preparing youth in foster care for transition to successful lives in our community

Employment Initiatives

Early on in the history of the City of Life Foundation it became clear that helping foster youth get and hold jobs was a key indicator of their ability to successfully leave the social welfare system. In fact, one of the very first activities we did was to set up and operate full day events that brought educators, employers, caregivers and youth together to focus on how to make youth self-sustaining.

These successful events were followed by other innovative programs based at Westgate Resorts. Youth were given summer jobs at Westgate Lakes Resort. Plus they were provided with on-property housing, meals, transportation and access to continuing educational programs that raised their employability skills.

In addition, we worked with Westgate employees prior to the arrival of the foster youth to be sure each youth was assigned a company mentor and on-going contact with wrap-around support services.

This program was so successful that it earned an award for innovation and successful outcomes from the Central Florida Chapter of the American Philanthropy Association.

Using all the information learned from these two programs and adding continuing input from Community Action Team meetings, City of Life created and launched a new employment program called Each One Help One. That program was launched in 2014 and is still in place today.

Preparing youth in foster care for transition to successful lives in our community

Employment Initiatives

Early on in the history of the City of Life Foundation it became clear that helping foster youth get and hold jobs was a key indicator of their ability to successfully leave the social welfare system. In fact, one of the very first activities we did was to set up and operate full day events that brought educators, employers, caregivers and youth together to focus on how to make youth self-sustaining.

These successful events were followed by another innovative programs based at Westgate Resorts. Youth were given summer jobs at Westgate Lakes Resort. Plus they were provided with on-property housing, meals, transportation and access to continuing educational programs that raised their employability skills.

In addition, we worked with Westgate employees prior to the arrival of the foster youth to be sure each youth was assigned a company mentor and on-going contact with wrap-around support services.

This program was so successful that it earned an award for innovation and successful outcomes from the Central Florida Chapter of the American Philanthropy Association.

Using all the information learned from these two programs and adding continuing input from Community Action Team meetings, City of Life created and launched a new employment program called Each One Help One. That program was launched in 2014 and is still in place today.

The operating premise of Each One Help One is that youth in foster care need a strong support system that involves their caregivers, schools, case managers, community resources and employers to be able to become self-sustaining adults who can self-advocate and build successful lives.

To accomplish this transition, we’ve partnered with Goodwill Industries of Central Florida, Embrace Families and other groups that support job placement like CareerSource and Florida Department of Vocational Rehabilitation Services. Importantly we reached out to local employers and established direct contact with them so they could adapt their infrastructure to provide support for youth coming out of the social welfare system.

This meant that employers, large and small, would be asked to support individual youth….not to simply plug them into their hiring process. Hence, the idea of “Each One Help One.”

This concept has been so successful for the youth, the caregivers, the service providers and companies involved that it was selected by the Florida Dept of Children and Families as a “Best Practice” and was transmitted as a statewide webinar in 2016.

To date, Each One Help One has connected over 400 youth to jobs and hundreds more have been identified so they can receive job skills services on a continuing basis.

A wide range of companies have worked with us to provide job shadows, internships and jobs over the years and they continue to work with us to connect youth with jobs and careers. A partial list of partners and participating companies/entities is;

  • Westgate Resorts
  • Universal Studios
  • Panera Bread (Covelli Industries)
  • Valencia College
  • Walt Disney World
  • Colorvision
  • Advent Health
  • Apartment Association of Greater Orlando
  • City of Apopka
  • Owens-Services
  • McDonald’s Corp (local franchisees)
  • 15 Light Years
  • Electronic Arts
  • Orange County Public Schools
  • Orlando Magic

What can you do to help?

Please consider taking these steps;

  • 1 Send this material to your colleagues and ask them to contact City of Life about giving One Youth a job;
  • 2 Consider giving one youth a job at one of your facilities:
  • 3 Put this information on your website or in social media and encourage people to contact City of Life about the Each One Help One program;
  • 4 Contact City of Life to begin participating in the job shadowing program.
Scroll To Top