YOUTH PROGRAMS AT A GLANCE
Our mission at ACC Youth Programs is to support and prepare refugee and immigrant youth in navigating new sociocultural, economic, academic, and personal landscapes while providing these young leaders with a sense of community and belonging. The ACC Youth Program has two primary goals. First, it is imperative for our programs and initiatives to ensure the future upward mobility of refugee & immigrant youth as they transition into a different cultural context. Many of ACC’s youth programs build communities of individuals who come together to achieve healthy and sustainable goals for themselves and their communities. With this in mind, our second goal is to incorporate resources that provide a variety of leadership and character development activities that respond directly to the diverse identities of the refugee youth population in the Denver Metro area.
ACC Youth Programs believes in supporting and inspiring young new comers, who may be refugees or youth with other immigrant backgrounds, to become outstanding young leaders in their communities. All of our resources, initiatives and programs recognize the unique position that refugee and immigrant youth may find themselves in.
The ACC Youth Program has two primary goals. First, it is imperative for our programs and initiatives to ensure the future upward mobility of refugee youth as they transition into a different cultural context. Many of ACC’s youth programs build communities of individuals who come together to achieve healthy and sustainable goals for themselves and their communities. With this in mind, our second goal is to incorporate resources that provide a variety of leadership and character development activities that respond directly to the diverse identities of the refugee youth population in the Denver Metro area.
Finally, ACC Youth Programs plays an important, and very unique role critically understanding what these sustainable lives may mean and look like for every individual engaged in our programs services.
Working closely with ACC’s Resettlement Team, ACC Youth Programs’ Family & School Liaison supports newly arrived families and their children as they prepare to enroll their children in the surrounding public schools. Our Family & School Liaison works extremely close with the Welcome Center in Aurora and other public school district offices. Finally, the Family and School Liaison is able to provide each enrolled child or youth with the required schools supplies. For more information contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
"Denver's International Community of Individuals, Teens, and Youth"
At International CITY, we host daily programming to help new students feel welcome, engaged and vital in their new community and city. The program is designed in the style of a drop-in center for youth in our community, mainly ages 14-24. All youth are welcome. We are building a welcoming, inclusive, and multicultural environment that primarily represents the youth of the East Colfax neighborhood and the families with whom ACC works. Participants have a choice of numerous activities on a daily basis that include college access workshops, homework tutoring, career counseling, conversation about navigating school and home, and hip-hop dance club - to name a few. Youth show up and have a choice to pursue whatever they are interested in. International City is a positive place to learn, connect, and grow.
In addition, initiatives and workshops that center on youth advocacy and resilience are ever-growing and are our most dynamic programming yet.
Programming takes place Monday-Thursday at the Mango House: 1532 Galena Street, Aurora, CO 80010, with outings and field trips on Fridays.
You can continue reading about each of our programs below!
COLORADO REFUGEE YOUTH SCHOLARSHIP FUND
The Colorado Refugee Youth Scholarship Fund was created to provide financial support for outstanding refugee youth who choose to pursue higher education, while engaging participants as leaders and change-makers in the community. The scholarship program is a year-long leadership training program that requires participants to volunteer in the community and mentor younger refugee students while maintaining their hard work in school and at home for their families,. Upon completion of the program, each student is awarded a $1,000 scholarship to use toward tuition or educational expenses.
In 2015, the Colorado Refugee Youth Scholarship Fund awarded its first Ambassadorial Scholarship due to the enormous generosity of a Denver community member. Going forward, one individual from the annual CRYSF program will be awarded a full four years of tuition to a Colorado institution of higher learning.
Thanks for the generosity of our donors, we have awarded over $70,000 in scholarship funds to refugee youth.
The Colorado Refugee Youth Scholarship Fund has relied upon and benefited from the unwavering support of our Denver community and others in helping refugee youth pursue higher education. Your contributions support the ongoing success of a highly motivated and inspiring group of students from around the world, allowing them to flourish as leaders in our community, now and into the future.
In 2013, ACC's Youth Program created and developed a culturally relevant college access program called On TRAC (Training Refugees Accessing College). For many refugee youth, navigating new social and academic environments while keeping up with their responsibilities at home can be overwhelming. On TRAC offers college literacy lessons, while honoring the identities, experiences and strengths of refugee youth.
On TRAC has successfully identified and addressed the implicit and explicit boundaries affecting how differently refugee youth engage in educational spaces and how complex accessing college may be for them. The workshops provide a space for our students to share their experiences and identify and access their individual skills as sources of learning and growth. Our unique curriculum invites students to enter conversations regarding identity, community, and their experiences of migration. Leadership skills are taught to help students increase their competence levels while receiving support getting enrolled in college and accessing financial aid.
Career Discovery is a year-long program that provides advice and support for students who are interested in entering a profession. Our Young Adult Career Counselor position liaises between different workforce centers in surrounding counties to expand career opportunities to a variety of students. Career Discovery provides dynamic and structured resources throughout the year that facilitate an understanding of resumes, cover letter and references, and different work environments. We place the passion of each student at the center of the career pursuit process in order to help students capitalize on personal and professional skills, attitude and knowledge. Career Discovery frequently joins with On TRAC to hold powerful college presentations and career panels designed to expand each student’s horizons.
YOUTH ADVOCACY AND RESILIENCE PROGRAMS
The passion to support and guide refugee youth as they transition into a new cultural context drives all of the initiatives within ACC’s Youth Program. We understand the importance of fostering advocacy for students as they develop new ideas, understandings and interest in community service, education and careers and grow their personal strengths.
The Ready for Retail program provides training for youth interested in pursuing careers in fashion, retail, and business. Ready for Retail has advanced students’ careers while developing personal and professional skills. Many of these graduates have achieved beyond their expectations and continue to bring newly acquired skills and knowledge into their own communities.
ACC’s Youth Program also provides services related to resettlement. For example, we provide a youth version of the Cultural Orientation program that adults attend during their initial resettlement process that is focused on issues relevant and appropriate to a younger age group.