The Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA) has announced a five-year workforce readiness partnership with Atlanta-based The Coca-Cola Company to close the employment and opportunity gap. The partnership will prepare more than 4.7 million American youth to become the pioneering workers, leaders and innovators of tomorrow.

Through a network of industry, nonprofit, government and education partners, Boys & Girls Clubs nationwide are increasing access to a variety of career exploration and work experiences for local Clubs. 

“Boys & Girls Clubs serve as a safe environment for young people to learn and grow year-long,” said Jim Clark, president and CEO for the Boys & Girls Clubs of America. “As we continue to navigate the impact of COVID-19 and help aspiring youth achieve great futures, our Workforce Readiness Strategy with The Coca-Cola Company will play an essential role in restoring security and resiliency within our youth, so they’re ready to explore their dream jobs and make positive differences in the world.”  

According to organizers, the BGCA’s Workforce Readiness Strategy is intended to foster sound life-decisions by building social and emotional skills such as communication, creativity, collaboration and leadership, which are all critical for 21st-century careers.

The strategy also exposes Boys & Girls Club teens to real-world work experiences and to employability skills like resume writing and interview prep, as well as industry certifications for first jobs in high school and following graduation.

“As a long-standing partner of Boys & Girls Clubs of America, we are committed to helping expand the developmental and growth opportunities for young people in communities across our country,” said Quinton Martin, Coca-Cola North America’s vice president for community marketing. “We are proud to expand our support and join the organization in implementing a Workforce Readiness Strategy designed to equip our nation’s youth with the tools and resources needed to ensure they join and become leaders of the future workforce,” 

A partner of BGCA for the last 74 years, Coca-Cola’s investment will support four pillars: essential skill development, career exploration, employability skills and credentialing, and work-based learning opportunities for young people at Clubs.

Coca-Cola will also support BGCA programs like CareerLaunch, which enables teens to explore career opportunities that align with their passions and talents. 

Amid widespread social and economic uncertainty, BGCA and Coca-Cola are committed to keeping young people on track academically and engaged in building fundamental, transferable skills for success to help them become both life and workforce ready.

To learn more about Boys & Girls Clubs’ commitment to Workforce Readiness, visit BGCA.org/workforce.

(Photo: Courtesy of Boys & Girls Club of Metro Atlanta)

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