Taller San Jose Hope Builders

Santa Ana, CA
CEO/Executive Director: Shawna Smith

Taller San Jose Hope Builders empowers disconnected young people through a holistic training program that simulates the workplace and encompasses education, job training, and employability and life skills.

Hope Builders simulates the workplace, reinforces professional behaviors and provides youth with 16 to 20 weeks of paid training in industries including construction and green technology, healthcare, business administration and information technology. Young people also receive case management and life skills training, job placement and retention services, and links to post-secondary certificates and degrees.

“Through PropelNext we've learned that evaluation is more than just looking at outcomes; it is about developing the ability to examine what you are doing, why and for whom, and to respond to information in real time so that, ultimately, our youth get the best shot at leading productive and fulfilling lives." -Shawna SmithTaller San Jose Hope Builders

Since 1995, Hope Builders has helped more than 5,400 youth transform their lives, supporting them as they transition into and retain employment that offers a living wage and opportunity for advancement. In 2016-2017, 87 percent of the program’s 200 graduates found employment and 76 percent of them retained their jobs for at least 6 months.

Hope Builders serves 18 to 28 year old young adults who are unemployed, low-income, basic skills deficient, pregnant or parenting, and/or impacted by gangs, violence or criminal activity. Hope Builders particularly seeks to recruit and enroll youth who demonstrate a strong motivation to take responsibility for turning their lives around.

Read the Hope Builders Grantee Story: At Hope Builders, More Youth Benefit from Better Programs

Watch Shawna Smith talk about her organization's experiences