Colorado Youth for a Change proudly partners with 31 school districts to support over 6,000 students every year.
Our work started in 2005, when over 18,000 young people were leaving Colorado schools early – without diplomas. We partnered in those early days with just one district to track down these students and provide options and support to get back into school. We were humbled to hear stories of young people within a semester of graduation; young people who regretted their decision to leave and didn’t know they could go back; young people who left school to support families but wanted another chance at education.
The ripple effect of going back to school and graduating is obvious: better health outcomes, more income earned, and more options through post-secondary and the workforce. While this work of helping young people find pathways back into school continues today, over the years that work led to also focusing on prevention and early intervention. We now look at key milestones in a student’s journey toward graduation and offer support across five programs.
Hear about our work from our amazing students and AmeriCorps members:
"I slowly became the person I always desired to be – someone responsible, someone who can achieve when life hits the hardest, and most importantly, I learned how to pick myself up when I fall. In the beginning, I didn’t expect myself to graduate. I didn’t think I was ever going to go to college, and I didn’t expect myself to be truly happy with the way life has been treating me. But here I am, graduating from high school and in college." Former CYC student
“One thing I am most proud of is definitely the growth of each of my students. There were students who told me that they would never be able to read with such low confidence and now they are able to read word construction sentences and longer words. You can just see the difference of confidence in each of the students I have worked with this year.” CYC AmeriCorps Alumni with Reading Corps
“Corps for a Change has impacted students by placing support in schools where there would not be otherwise. Often in schools there is not a specific person dedicated to those who struggle with attendance, and if there is, it is an added task to an already full workload. That said, students who struggle with being at school can be overlooked and forgotten because they are not physically seen; however, CYC has provided support to those students so that they can build a healthy relationships with helpful adults.” CYC AmeriCorps Alumni with Corps for a Change