LEAP Partner Receives $1 Million to Expand Initiative in Minnesota
Project for Pride in Living (PPL), a partner of the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s Learn and Earn to Achieve Potential (LEAP)™, has received funds totaling $1 million from the city of St. Paul, Minnesota, and Ramsey County, Minnesota. These funds will support LEAP pilot sites managed by PPL throughout Ramsey County, including the City of Saint Paul, at schools and community organizations. The dollars are part of a $24.8 million American Rescue Plan funding package for high-quality job training programs and workforce initiatives in the state.
LEAP is a multi-state initiative that works with youth and young adults ages 14–25 who have experiences with the foster care system, criminal justice system or homelessness. The initiative is dedicated to increasing education and employment opportunities for young people.
Through LEAP, Project for Pride in Living assists young people via a network of community-based partners, including local schools and youth-serving organizations. To date, the organization has:
- helped 695 young people re-enroll in high school;
- provided support and education to young parents seeking a high school diploma or GED; and
- Worked with community organizers to successfully ensure that high schoolers who lost jobs during the pandemic were able to access federal unemployment assistance under the CARES Act.
The new funding includes $600,000 from the city of St. Paul and $400,000 from Ramsey County.
“Over the past seven years, Project for Pride in Living has provided essential pathways to high-quality education and employment for young people through LEAP,” says Ranita Jain, a Casey Foundation senior associate who specializes in employment, education and training. “Thanks to these funds, Project for Pride in Living can better support more young people in the state of Minnesota as they continue their education and work toward fulfilling careers.”
“This infusion marks a new phase in our support of youth opportunity here in the Twin Cities,” says Emily Terrell, Project for Pride in Living’s director of youth employment strategies. “We are thrilled to partner with the city of St. Paul and Ramsey County through this effort and to be able to offer the support of LEAP and connections to career pathways to students as they grow to be healthy, wealthy and wise.”