Q & A on Avivo’s Youth & Young Adult Employment Programs

Learn about Avivo’s Youth and Young Adult Employment programs in this question and answer session with program director Becca Lopez.

First off, how are you connecting with potential program participants during the COVID-19 pandemic? Can young people looking for work still get help at Avivo?

Yes! We are still serving people right now. Our career counselors are working remotely and can connect via phone, email, text, and our youth Facebook profiles. We can enroll someone into the program over the phone, help with job seeking skills, provide leads to employment, work on education plans, prep for training, and make referrals to supports for emergency needs and unemployment.

How would you describe Avivo’s Youth/Young Adult Employment Programs?

Avivo’s youth and young adult employment programs are designed to help young people prepare for work, regardless of where they are today. This may mean support to finish high school, tuition assistance for a short-term training, a paid internship, guidance on college enrollment, or one-to-one help with a job search. Some youth come in needing help with job applications and resumes. Others have strong job histories and are ready for next steps in their education. Regardless of where they are, our team is committed to supporting them as they work on next steps.

What are youth and young adults experiencing when they reach out to Avivo?

Whether unemployed, working but not getting enough hours, struggling because they haven’t finished high school, or needing to find short-term training options that can help boost their job search, we’re here to help. We help individuals who are experiencing homelessness, who are working on their recovery, who have involvement with the justice system, or who could just use some extra support. The youth we serve are ages 14-24 and generally have some roadblock(s) that make it hard to achieve next steps. Our job is to help break it down into manageable goals. We can’t fix everything, but we are well-connected and we want to help them succeed!

How does Avivo connect with youth and young adults to help them find employment?

Our approach is to meet youth where they are and challenge them to grow. We want to support each person in the way they need to be supported, not how we think they need to be supported. So, our approach is customized and one-to-one. We do outreach at libraries, schools, drop-in centers, shelters, and other places youth who need support might be. Our staff is typically in our south Minneapolis office in the Seward neighborhood, but we’re regulars at our north Minneapolis location as well, to make it easier for those who may travel across the city.

What are some successes and opportunities your team has linked youth and young adults to?

This year, we’ve had participants complete certified nursing assistant training, phlebotomy training, warehouse/forklift trainings, and have helped many on their path to their diploma or GED. We’ve also had some cool opportunities for paid work experience ranging from a school radio station to screen printing!

How would you describe your team?

This team is awesome! Our group ranges from four years of experience to 20 years. We love what we do, we’re committed to our community, and we want to see young people grow. We’re also going to be the first to say that we want to give the necessary skills needed for success. This won’t be a team that does things for you. Instead, we’ll do things with you to help you succeed.

How do youth and young adults connect with Avivo?

You can usually find us in south Minneapolis at our Seward location (900 20th Avenue South) and we make appointments at our north Minneapolis location (2143 Lowry Avenue North). Learn more at our website.

Anything else that excites you?

This team is always excited when we get to see young people succeed. Asking for help, landing a first interview, getting a first job, entering careers, returning to school, graduations, getting housing, coming off of probation – these are all exciting moments for our participants. We’ll celebrate anytime they happen!


This question and answer is part of a series to learn about different Avivo programs. Read our Q & A on Avivo’s new street outreach team or find out more about our youth and young adult employment programs.

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