Illinois YouthBuild Projects Calvin Murphy


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Illinois YouthBuild Projects


There are at least 2.3 million low-income 16-24 year-olds in the United States who are not in education, employment, or training.

  • There are at least 2.3 million low-income 16-24 year-olds in the United States who are not in education, employment, or training.

  • YouthBuild programs in the United States provide pathways for low-income young people learn construction skills through building affordable housing for homeless and low-income people in their neighborhoods and other community assets such as schools, playgrounds, and community centers.



1978 Initial Youth Build project was in Harlem, New York in 1978. The project rehabbed an abandoned ten unit tenement building.

  • 1978 Initial Youth Build project was in Harlem, New York in 1978. The project rehabbed an abandoned ten unit tenement building.

  • 1984 A citywide coalition of 500 organizations persuaded the New York City Council to replicate the program. It won city tax-levy funds for six non-profits to establish YouthBuild programs in their neighborhoods.

  • 1992 Legislation authorizing the federal YouthBuild program passed. Program based in HUD.

  • 2006 Program transferred to Department of Labor.



2014 YouthBuild USA has 260 urban and rural programs in 46 states. YouthBuild programs sponsored and managed by local nonprofits, community colleges, and public agencies.

  • 2014 YouthBuild USA has 260 urban and rural programs in 46 states. YouthBuild programs sponsored and managed by local nonprofits, community colleges, and public agencies.

  • YouthBuild programs primary funding source is the US Department of Labor through the Employment and Training Administration.



The YouthBuild program has five components: construction, education, counseling, leadership, and graduate opportunity. Students spend every other week on a job site, learning the construction trade by building homes for their own communities. This creates housing for low-income people, and also gives the students marketable job skills. The alternate weeks are spent on education in the YouthBuild classroom, with the goal of attaining a GED or completing their high school diploma.

  • The YouthBuild program has five components: construction, education, counseling, leadership, and graduate opportunity. Students spend every other week on a job site, learning the construction trade by building homes for their own communities. This creates housing for low-income people, and also gives the students marketable job skills. The alternate weeks are spent on education in the YouthBuild classroom, with the goal of attaining a GED or completing their high school diploma.

  • Wikipedia



April 2015, Department of Labor announces YouthBuild grants totaling $76M available to help at-risk youth complete education, develop job and leadership skills.

  • April 2015, Department of Labor announces YouthBuild grants totaling $76M available to help at-risk youth complete education, develop job and leadership skills.





Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) announced on April 15, 2014, $3,398,444 in capital funding to provide residential weatherization services to eligible homeowners across the state as part of the Urban Weatherization Initiative (UWI). UWI is the nation’s first state-funded weatherization program and one of the largest job creation initiatives to date for urban communities in Illinois.

  • Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) announced on April 15, 2014, $3,398,444 in capital funding to provide residential weatherization services to eligible homeowners across the state as part of the Urban Weatherization Initiative (UWI). UWI is the nation’s first state-funded weatherization program and one of the largest job creation initiatives to date for urban communities in Illinois.





The American Lung Association has partnered with YouthBuild Rockford to provide radon measurement and where needed mitigation as part of a State Indoor Radon Grant project with the USEPA and IEMA.

  • The American Lung Association has partnered with YouthBuild Rockford to provide radon measurement and where needed mitigation as part of a State Indoor Radon Grant project with the USEPA and IEMA.

  • IEMA made available $65,000 for radon measurement and mitigation activities.



Youth Build Pilot Project

  • April and May 2015

  • Mt Vernon, IL





United Methodist Children’s Home – Ryan Alton

  • United Methodist Children’s Home – Ryan Alton

  • US EPA – Susie Shimek

  • IEMA – Patrick Daniels, Melinda Lewis

  • Florida Radon Program – Clark Eldredge

  • Allied Radon Services, Inc – Calvin Murphy



Determine if Youth Build program is a means to train youth as potential radon mitigation technicians.

  • Determine if Youth Build program is a means to train youth as potential radon mitigation technicians.



The American Lung Association mitigation course will be the source of classroom material taught to the students.

  • The American Lung Association mitigation course will be the source of classroom material taught to the students.

  • We will alternate between classroom lecture and a house being rehabbed in Mt Vernon.



After completion of classroom and field training including diagnostics and system installation, students will take state licensing exam.

  • After completion of classroom and field training including diagnostics and system installation, students will take state licensing exam.

  • House has been gutted and day light is visible in parts of the house. Cannot maintain closed house conditions to get an accurate radon measurement prior to installation of an active system. After rehab is completed, will perform measurements with system running and then turn system off, cap the stack and retest.



Anticipate class of 4 to 8 students.

  • Anticipate class of 4 to 8 students.

  • Beginning April 28 and plan to complete by end of May.





Ultimate Goal

  • If program is successful and students pass the Illinois Licensing exam, hope to expand the program to other Youth Build programs and train students to work as mitigation technicians either in Illinois or in other states.

  • If it is determined that the students cannot pass the licensure exam, could the program be modified to provide the radon industry with a supply of mitigation laborers?






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