The Youth Empowerment Project’s Trafigura Work & Learn (W&L) Center is modeled after the highly successful Work & Learn Center operated by Domus Kids in Stamford, CT (and is the second in the United States funded through the Trafigura Foundation). The W&L Center is a youth employment program where youth earn an educational stipend while working alongside YEP staff, gaining vital hard and soft skills that help them get and keep jobs. The hard skills offered through the W&L Center include customer service, bicycle repair, digital design and computer coding. Since the program's inception, nearly 40 percent of graduates have successfully transitioned into employment opportunities.
The Work & Learn Center operates 12-week training cycles during the year, with each cycle running two days a week for a total of four hours. Currently, the Trafigura Work & Learn Center offers students training in bicycle repair, customer service, digital design and computer coding. As part of this customer training curriculum, YEP opened the Trafigura Work & Learn Center Retail Store in December 2013. In September 2016, YEP created Design Works and in December 2016, Thrift Works. You can read more about our youth-run businesses here.
The Trafigura Foundation is the philanthropic arm of the Trafigura Group, one of the world's leading commodities trading and logistics companies. The Foundation sponsors partner organisations in carrying out and strengthening programmes in three areas of focus: sustainable development, education & integration, and health. It is committed to helping people and communities reach their full potential through self-sustaining solutions, such as setting up a small business or training to acquire new skills. In 2012 the Trafigura Foundation supported 44 programmes operated by 32 different partners across 31 countries spanning all continents. For more information please visit www.trafigurafoundation.com.