At YouthBuild, low-income young people learn construction skills to help build affordable housing and other community assets such as community centers and schools.


There are an estimated 4.9 million young adults ages 16-24 in America who are neither in work nor school. Of these, there are estimated to be as many as 3 million youth living in poverty who are not in education, employment or training.  These are the opportunity youth with whom YouthBuild programs around the country work.

Globally, over 200 million youth are working poor and earning less than $2.00 a day. All are in urgent need of pathways to education, jobs, entrepreneurship, and other opportunities leading to productive livelihoods and community leadership.

YouthBuild programs provide those pathways. All over the world they unleash the positive energy of low-income young people to rebuild their communities and their lives, breaking the cycle of poverty with a commitment to work, education, family, and community. 


  • In the course of their full-time enrollment, our YouthBuild participants:

  • Achieve their high school equivalency credentials or high school diplomas in a caring individualized context 

  • Obtain job skills and earn a stipend, wage, or living allowance  for building affordable, increasingly green housing for homeless and low-income people in their communities 

  • Gain industry-recognized certifications in preparation for productive careers (in addition to construction, some train for jobs in healthcare, technology, or  customer service)

  • Solve personal problems with counseling support, addressing urgent needs for housing or child care, record expungement, or other problems

  • Give back and lead through participation in community service and advocating for their communities on the local and national levels

  • Transition into post-program placements, in college, registered apprenticeships, other postsecondary opportunities, and employment, with the support of a transition coordinator and mentors