The L.A. Conservation Corps Clean and Green program was created in 1988 for off-track middle and high school students as a workforce development program. They are paid $12 an hour.
“We provide job training, such as showing up to work on time, in work clothes, with a lunch packed,” said Lorena Umana, program coordinator for the L.A. Conservation Corps.
In order to apply for the Clean and Green program, funded by the City of L.A. and the Bureau of Sanitation, kids have to be enrolled in school (many are in alternate schools) and show they are from low-income families.
“Our goal is not to have them here long-time,” Umana said. “We want them to complete their education and reach for something higher.” She noted that many continue with their education into college, and others will open their own business.
The Corps also has a Young Adult program that provides low-income disconnected youth (18-24) to train for and gain work experience in fields such as land management (habitat restoration and urban forestry), zero waste (recycling), construction, energy (audits and solar panel installation) and manufacturing.
Conservation Corps youth are also employed at SEA lab, located in Redondo Beach. Students give public tours, oversee fish feeding and help at the summer marine camps.
The L.A. Corps can be contacted to employ youth, if an organization needs any of the following: landscape construction, habitat restoration, irrigation installation, tree planting and urban forestry services, storm water capture and retention, graffiti removal, energy audits, community garden development and construction, native plant propagation, fire fuel reduction, invasive species removal, trail building and maintenance, urban park construction, community outreach and canvassing, environmental education and interpretation, large or small scale recycling, erosion/flood control and disaster relief.
For more information, call 323-224-2550 or visit lacorps.org.
The corps recently helped clean out homeless encampments in Pacific Palisades.