Youth Empowerment and Employment!

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The Humboldt Park Youth Employment & Empowerment Program is a part of The Puerto Rican Cultural Center, which is located  in the Humboldt Park area. Our program offers a 12-week workforce development internship to support youth who live within the Humboldt Park, Hermosa, Logan Square, West Town, and Belmont-Cragin communities, and are between the ages of 16 –  24. This program provides youth with 12 weeks of paid work experience, supplemented by weekly work-readiness courses that teach them critical workplace skills and prepare them for entry into the professional world. 

We are accepting all applicants that meet the criteria, including those who have no prior work experience, provided that they have not previously participated in an Illinois Worknet program. We especially welcome school push-outs or students at risk of dropping out, teen parents, youth in single parent households, and homeless youth. Through our partnerships with local businesses in the community, we introduce youth to diverse fields of work where they can learn from independent business owners and industry professionals for the duration of the 12-week period. The courses, which go hand in hand with the work, are created in tandem with a state-wide curriculum and supplement the skills that youth will be building in their worksites. Our instructors have developed an engaging course that offers career education, resume & cover-letter building & editing, life skill education including taxes and navigation, and educational planning.  

 In addition, our interns also receive case management services on a weekly basis. Participants will meet with their case manager regularly throughout the duration of the program where they will receive assistance and have their questions answered on an as-needed basis. 

Once youth have completed the program they will have the skills and knowledge necessary to go into the workforce. Our goal is to provide youth with permanent employment, re-engagement with their education, or enrollment in college or technical programs. Our office will remain available to graduated youth as a resource while they continue to develop career goals and follow their respective paths. We look at these youth as the future leaders and members of society and we are excited to help prepare them for that future. 


In order to qualify for participation in this program, the youth must: 

  • Be a resident of the Humboldt Park/West Town/ Logan Square/Hermosa/Belmont-Cragin neighborhood(s)
  • Be between the ages of 16 to 24 at the time of participation
  • Have a social security card & valid form of photo identification


  • Ability to commit to 15 hours per week of work
  • Ability to commit to 5 hours per week of instruction 
  • Be open & flexible to various work experiences 
  • Willing to work hard 

How to apply: 

Applications for this program must be completed in-person at the Humboldt Park Youth Employment and Empowerment Program office. Youth must complete a paper application, as well as have a photo ID and proof of ability to work in the United States. Qualifying applicants will complete a short interview to determine interests and gauge previous experience, and participate in a short program orientation before being given their placements. 

If you have any questions about this opportunity you can contact us through email, phone or in-person at our office. 


Phone Number: (773) 697 – 3026

Office Address: 2425 W Division St, Chicago IL 60622 

Monday through Friday 10:30 AM – 6:30 PM

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