For Immediate Release
August 23, 2022

Contact: Shaleeka Powell, shaleeka.powell@californiavolunteers.ca.gov 916-584-1705

California Chief Service Officer Fryday, Zero Waste Sonoma and Conservation Corps North Bay Highlight Historic Youth Investment in Sonoma County

$2.5 million #CaliforniansForAll Youth Jobs Corps investment to help youth gain real-world work experience and uplift their community

SONOMA COUNTY, Calif. – Today, California Chief Service Officer Josh Fryday, Zero Waste Sonoma, and Conservation Corps North Bay leaders highlighted a $2.5 million investment in Sonoma County to recruit young leaders for the #CaliforniansForAll Youth Jobs Corps. 

The innovative new partnership with California Volunteers, Office of the Governor will enable Conservation Corps North Bay to recruit, train, and hire local youth to gain paid work experience on projects combating the effects of climate change and create pathways to future public service employment.

“The #CaliforniansForAll Youth Jobs Corps is a win for our young people, Sonoma County, and the State of California,” said California Chief Service Officer Josh Fryday.  “This impressive group of young people are also joining a larger team of tens of thousands of California service members participating in California Volunteers programs.”

The #CaliforniansForAll Youth Jobs Corps is a partnership between the State of California and local governments to help underserved youth find employment. Through the program, young people in cities across California will gain critical job skills while making a positive, lasting impact in their communities. 

Included in the California 2021- 2022 budget, the #CaliforniansForAll Youth Jobs Corps program provides $150 million for youth workforce development in the 13 largest cities in California and $35 million for counties and other cities around the state.

“The #CaliforniansForAll Youth Job Corps Program is a major investment in our youth,” said Assemblymember Marc Levine. “This opportunity will give underserved youth valuable job experience and life skills while making positive impacts in their community. It may even inspire a new generation of public servants and leaders in the North Bay.”

“I am thrilled to support California Volunteers, the Conservation Corps, and Zero Waste Sonoma as they embark on their Youth Jobs Corps effort in my 4th Assembly District,” said Assemblymember Cecilia Aguiar-Curry. “Our vote to support California Volunteers resulted in a $2.5 million commitment to this worthy effort in Sonoma County to teach young Sonomans job skills and help our local environment. What a great opportunity for young people to learn and make our region a better place.”

“The #CaliforniansForAll Youth Jobs Corps collaboration between California Volunteers, Zero Waste Sonoma, and Conservation Corps North Bay allows young people to gain paid work experience while helping the community fight the increasingly devastating effects of wildfire,” said Sonoma County Supervisor James Gore. “I am thrilled to see the great work of Sonoma’s young leaders as they explore career pathways and serve the community.”

The grant enables Zero Waste Sonoma, and the 10 Sonoma County jurisdictions they serve to expand food recovery efforts. Instead of going to the landfill, recovered usable food will help nourish food insecure people in the community. The grant also expands the infrastructure needed to decrease greenhouse gas emissions generated from unwanted food that is placed in landfills. In addition to learning through on-the-job training and earning skill certifications, participants will receive wrap-around services including one-on-one coaching, career exploration, barrier removal, life skills workshops, and support applying and interviewing for living-wage jobs upon completing the program.

“This grant expands the infrastructure needed to decrease greenhouse gas emissions generated from unwanted food that is landfilled, while rescuing food that is desperately needed to care for people at risk of hunger,” said Leslie Lukacs, Zero Waste Sonoma Executive Director. “In addition, young adults are learning new job skills and working in a future-driven career field which in turn bolsters the ability of our community to address the climate emergency we are facing.”

“Conservation Corps North Bay is proud to continue our long-time partnership with Zero Waste Sonoma by collaborating on this exciting opportunity for the young people in our program to gain valuable work experience while helping combat the effects of climate change in our community,” said Angel Minor, CEO of Conservation Corps North Bay. “We are grateful to the #CaliforniansFor All Youth Jobs Corps for supporting the next generation of California’s environmental workforce on their journey to accomplish their career goals.”

Conservation Corps North Bay recruited young adults of diverse backgrounds to join the #CaliforniansForAll Youth Jobs Corps to connect them with career building resources. Priority was given to applicants aged 16-30 who are low-income, unemployed and/or out of school, justice-involved or current/former foster youth. Youth are currently learning and working in a future-driven career field, bolstering the ability of our community to address the climate emergency we face. 

Learn more about the program at zerowastesonoma.gov, ccnorthbay.org, CAYouthJobscorps.com.   

Livestream recording: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xQ5wdAmi0zQ


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Led by California Chief Service Officer Josh Fryday, California Volunteers, Office of the Governor empowers Californians to take action to improve their communities. #CaliforniansForAll is a California Volunteers service initiative launched in response to COVID-19 to establish a volunteer corps to support the state’s response to emergencies and disasters.

Zero Waste Sonoma is the local government entity for all things related to Household Hazardous Waste (HHW), organics municipal composting, public education, and planning for recycling and solid waste disposal. Zero Waste Sonoma helps the residents and businesses of Sonoma County reduce, reuse, recycle, and discard all materials in the safest and most environmentally responsible way possible. www.zerowastesonoma.gov

Founded in 1982 as the nation’s first local nonprofit conservation corps program, Conservation Corps North Bay is a recognized leader in youth service. Its mission is to develop youth and conserve natural resources for a resilient, sustainable, and equitable community. You can learn more at www.ccnorthbay.org.