Youth Opportunity Fund


The Youth Opportunity Fund, led by the Citi Foundation and America’s Promise Alliance, provides grants to nonprofits working in innovative ways to place low-income young adults on a path towards college and career success in 10 cities across the United States: Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, Miami, New York City, Newark, St. Louis, San Francisco Bay Area and Washington, D.C.

The Fund is part of the Citi Foundation’s Pathways to Progress initiative, a three-year, $50 million commitment to give 100,000 low-income youth in the U.S. the opportunity to develop the workplace skills and leaders experience necessary to compete in a 21st century economy.

America's Promise Alliance, the nation’s largest network of national organizations dedicated to improving the lives of children and youth, provides technical assistance and convenes grantees to collaborate on the most effective ways to expand youth economic opportunity in their communities.

Together, we have invested in an extraordinary group of organizations that are giving thousands of low-income young people a leg up and the support they need to get on a path to success.

To date, 24 organizations have received $250,000 Youth Opportunity Fund grants.

2016 Grantees


Sociedad Latina will work with the Mayor’s Office of Economic Development and three other Latino-led organizations in Boston to help 250 youth in the Mission Hill and Roxbury communities prepare for the workforce and pursue college and career pathways. Seventy-five percent of the young adults will receive hands-on experience through paid apprenticeship placements.



Genesys Works, in partnership with Chicago Public Schools and the local business community, will provide 735 low-income youth with college- and career-readiness support, including workforce training, paid internships in the IT or accounting sectors, college counseling, and support with the transition into the workforce.



United Way of Metropolitan Dallas will work with the Dallas Independent School District and City Year to provide 275 high school students from low-income families with the tools to support their successful transition to post-secondary education and become workforce-ready. The Skills to Succeed program will provide students with daily intensive academic, social and emotional support, plus “soft skills” training in teamwork, critical thinking and financial literacy. 


Los Angeles

Los Angeles Conservation Corps in partnership with municipal agencies, will help 300 young adults from underserved communities pursue clean tech jobs. An environmentally-focused workforce development program, Green Career Pathways will provide a paid work experience, specialized training, employment transition services, and the opportunity to earn an industry-recognized certification in the “green jobs” sector.



Greater Miami Service Corps will work with the Miami-Dade County government to launch Corps to Career, which will provide 300 out-of-school young adults who have participated in GMSC service-learning opportunities with the chance to use what they’ve learned in work experience opportunities at city, state and county offices including the airport, hospital, tourism, public works and parks venues.


New York City

STRIVE will partner with the East Harlem Talent Network to create Serve UP Harlem, a program that will train 250 youth from low-income families for entry-level jobs in New York City’s fast-growing food service and hospitality sector. The program will also provide wrap-around supports such as case management, career planning, financial literacy training, and help exploring education options.


Urban Upbound will work with the New York City Housing Authority to help 350 young adults living in public housing earn credentials for jobs in the construction sector in their communities. This training will supplement Urban Upbound’s existing employment training with CUNY’s Career Pathways Roadmaps and provide additional academic, financial and workplace skills.



NPower will engage 300 underserved youth in Newark and Jersey City to prepare them for high quality jobs in the technology sector. Through partnerships with industry leaders and local high schools, NPower will offer students work-based learning and hands on app development training. Through its Technology Service Corps, a workforce development program, NPower will provide young adults with technology and soft-skills training and apprenticeships at leading companies and nonprofits.


St. Louis

Wyman Center will work with STL Youth Jobs and the United Way of Greater St. Louis to support more than 300 young adults from under-resourced environments to thrive in the workforce, today and in the future. Youth will participate in paid positions, job shadow opportunities, career mentoring and ongoing quality programming. Through these experiences, youth will build essential skills and ultimately achieve success through financial stability and fulfilling work.


San Francisco Bay Area

Youth Radio will prepare 250 low-income young adults for Bay Area jobs in media and technology through intensive training, college credit (in partnership with Peralta Community College), industry certification (from the CA Division of Apprenticeship Standards), wraparound support, and paid job placement.


Washington, DC

Per Scholas National Capital Region will work with the D.C. Office of Youth Programs, Prince George's County and Montgomery County to prepare 250 young adults for jobs in the technology field. The Connecting the Path program will help youth become career-ready and provide industry certification and job placement assistance.


Year Up National Capital Region will provide 400 young adults who are not in school and unemployed with rigorous technical and professional skills training (through a partnership with Northern Virginia Community College) and a six-month corporate internship.


Read full profiles of the 2015 grantees.


Please contact [email protected]

About Citi Foundation

The Citi Foundation works to promote economic progress and improve the lives of people in low-income communities around the world. We invest in efforts that increase financial inclusion, catalyze job opportunities for youth, and reimagine approaches to building economically vibrant cities. The Citi Foundation's "More than Philanthropy" approach leverages the enormous expertise of Citi and its people to fulfill our mission and drive thought leadership and innovation. For more information, visit