Mayor Landrieu Announces STRIVE Future Leaders Program Supporting Youth Involved in Justice System

NEW ORLEANS—Today, Mayor Mitch Landrieu announced the latest initiative of the Network for Economic Opportunity, STRIVE Future Leaders. An arm of the City’s STRIVE New Orleans program, STRIVE Future Leaders supports young adults between the ages of 18–24 who have been involved in the justice system. The program provides participants with case management services, post-secondary education opportunities, occupational skills training, service learning projects, paid internships, education placement assistance and job readiness training.

“We are excited about this new initiative targeting the city’s young adults to help them find their pathways to prosperity,” said Mayor Mitch Landrieu. “This group of young people requires special support, and we are ready to provide that with STRIVE Future Leaders. As we continue to grow as a city, it is important that everyone can benefit from the city’s success, especially our young people. They are the future of New Orleans.”

STRIVE International selected the City of New Orleans, along with 3 other cities, to receive $785,000 from the U.S. Department of Labor for the STRIVE Future Leaders program. Partnering with a number of local organizations, this initiative also assists communities with planning and implementing comprehensive strategies to address the full range of challenges involved in helping young people released from incarceration make a successful transition back to the community.

“With the STRIVE Future Leaders program, we are helping our young people to create a solid foundation for their future,“ said Deputy Mayor for Citywide Initiatives Judy Reese Morse. “We look forward to witnessing the impact of this initiative and watching these young adults grow into leaders of tomorrow.”

“We are confident that STRIVE Future Leaders will impact the lives of young people across New Orleans,” said Ashleigh Gardere, Senior Advisor for the Network for Economic Opportunity. “We celebrate this first cohort for taking a step in the right direction on their pathway to prosperity.”

Housed in the New Orleans Recreation Development Commission (NORDC) Rosenwald Recreation Center (1120 S. Broad St.), STRIVE Future Leaders includes 12 weeks of developmental programming with 6 months of follow-up. The series includes:

  • Weeks 1–2: Engaged Enrollment Period—Potential participants are interviewed and selected.
  • Weeks 3–5: Future Leaders Workshops—Participants explore a number of career pathways and professional interests.
  • Weeks 4–12: Workforce Experience and Training—Participants have the opportunity to participate in paid internships, post-secondary education opportunities and/or college and certificate programs.
  • 6 months of Follow-up: Next Steps & Transitions—Participants remain connected with STRIVE Future Leaders staff for support and assistance.

The STRIVE Future Leaders inaugural cohort is currently in the Future Leaders Workshops phase. At the opening session, participants explored job opportunities with representatives of Youth Rebuilding New Orleans, the Sewerage and Water Board, and Jae Fleming Catering and Event Planning.

Youth interested in participating in the STRIVE Future Leaders program are encouraged to contact Brandy Brooks at [email protected] or (504) 658-4276.

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