Business isn’t just about profit.
That is one of the mottos of one of San Francisco’s most exciting non-profits: New Door. New Door Ventures’ mission is simple: to prepare at-risk youth for work and life. Beginning as an organization focused on the homeless in 1981, New Door has refocused its energy into providing internships, job training, and other life skills to teenagers and young adults in San Francisco. Like many large, urban cities, San Francisco has a high rate of unemployment, lack of education, and crime. In order to give young people in the city a chance, New Door creates job internships with local business partners to teach participants new skills, keep them off the street, and get them on the road to a career. And the program has been successful. 86% of internship graduates go on to full-time employment or continuing education within six months.
However, New Door can provide more than just an internship or a job. It has often provided a way out of a desperate situation. That was the case for Richie, a program graduate who found New Door at a time when he was near rock bottom. After battling with dyslexia for most of his life, Richie gave up on school and dropped out his sophomore year of high school, which caused his dad to give up on him. Richie’s father abandoned him, leaving him without anyone and living on the street. Eventually he hitched a ride to San Francisco, where he slept on the couch of a friend for months. He had no family, no education, no job, and seemingly no hope. That is when he found New Door. There he was given a job at Pedal Revolution, a bike shop owned by the non-profit. He was paired with an academic tutor and is on his way to finishing his GED. He now pays rent for his own place and has plans to go to college someday.
If you are inspired by Richie’s story and would like to support young people like him, you can visit their website to see how you can get involved. There are many ways to offer assistance above and beyond simply donating money. The services of copywriters, photographers, and videographers are requested to help spread the word of the success stories. Website marketing expertise and email marking optimization is desired as well. Local volunteers can donate their time to tutoring youth or helping with mock interviews. Local businesses are asked to consider opening up intern positions. Help New Door give young people a chance who may have never had one before.