Tampa Heights Junior Civic Association S.PA.R.K. Program  is committed to preparing our 16-24 year old participants for careers, not just entry-level jobs.

Through a variety of enrichment activities, our educational and vocational opportunities enable youth and young adults to make better educational and occupational decisions.

We seek to place as many youth as possible in appropriate, meaningful jobs in safe settings, while providing exceptional supports, academic enrichment and opportunities to gain marketable skills; and to provide the community and businesses a view of our local emerging workforce at its best.

PPROGRAMS AND SERIVCES

The S.P.A.R.K. program is overseen by the Tampa Heights Junior Civic Association. In general, the youth programs are designed to offer the neediest youth with opportunities to successfully transition to adult roles and responsibilities. The emphasis has been on teaching academic and employability skills to youth who might otherwise not have an opportunity to succeed academically or vocationally. The youth service providers work with various agencies to recruit the neediest youth who may be out-of-school, homeless, aging out of foster care, offenders, disabled, and other at-risk youth. The Tampa Heights Junior Civic Association has a proactive vision of creating a seamless system that ensures all youth transition successfully from school to advanced training to work.

OUT-OF-SCHOOL YOUTH SERVICES 

S.P.A.R.K. s is “all things job” for eligible youth ages 16-24! Our experienced staff will meet one-on-one to assess each customer’s skills and needs. Students will have access to such services as tutoring and study skills training, occupational skill training, leadership development, mentoring, financial literacy, entrepreneurial skills training and other supportive services. Our dedicated staff work solely with youth and are experienced in assisting customers navigate the social service and education system and removing barriers to education and employment. They also work with employers to ensure youth have the skills employers are looking for to ensure the employee’s success.

ELIGIBILITY

Out-of-school youth—an individual who is—

  •          not attending any school (as defined under state law);
  •          not younger than age 16 or older than age 24; and
  •          one or more of the following:

    A school dropout.

    A youth who is within the age of compulsory school attendance, but has not attended school for at least the most recent complete school year calendar quarter.

    A recipient of a secondary school diploma or its recognized equivalent who is a low-income individual and is—

        (aa) basic skills deficient; or

        (bb) an English language learner.

  •        (iv) an individual who is subject to the juvenile or adult justice system.
  •        (v) a homeless, a runaway, in foster care or has aged out of the foster care system, a child eligible for assistance under section 477 of the social security act (42 u.s.c. 677), or in an out-of-home placement.
  •       (vi) an individual who is pregnant or parenting.
  •       (vii) a youth who is an individual with a disability.
  •       (viii) a low-income individual who requires additional assistance to enter or complete an educational program or to secure or hold employment.

In-school youth.— An individual who is—

(i) attending school (as defined by state law)

(ii) not younger than age 14 or (unless an individual with a disability who is attending school under state law) older than age 21;

(iii) a low-income individual; and

(iv) one or more of the following:

1.       Basic skills deficient.

2.       An English language learner.

3.        An offender.

4.       A homeless individual, a homeless child or youth, a runaway, in foster care or has aged out of the foster care system, a child eligible for assistance under section 477 of the social security act (42 u.s.c. 677), or in an out-of-home placement.

5.       A youth who is an individual with a disability. (vii) an individual who requires additional assistance to complete an educational program or to secure or hold employment.

Special rule: the term “low-income”, used with respect to an individual, also includes a youth living in a high-poverty area.

BECOME A WORK SITE!

Businesses (including nonprofits) that want to nurture the local youth population, provide skills, improve confidence and enhance prospects for future career growth can become a work site! Please contact PATRICK SNEED at sneed@thjca.org  for more information.

Here is a list of some local businesses helping local youth by becoming a work site:

  •          Muvico Ybor AMC
  •          McDonald’s
  •          Wal-Mart
  •          Publix Supermarket
  •          Winn Dixie
  •          Summer Youth Program City of Tampa
  •          Busch Gardens Tampa Bay
  •          Adventure Island

    Suncoast Credit Union Foundation

    MONEY SMART- FINANCIAL LITERACY

    The curriculum includes:

  •          Starting a savings account and the basics of saving
  •          Learning how to budget
  •          Understanding credit and using credit wisely
  •          What you need to know before buying a car
  •          How to move out of their parents’ or guardian’s house
  •          Consumer rights and responsibilities
  •          Investment accounts and saving for the future

Are you an out-of-school youth, 24 and under?

If you are 24 or under, out of school and interested in job placement or tuition assistance, THJrCA can help you pursue your educational goals and/or transition successfully into the workforce.

Please contact our Youth Department at tampaheightsjca@thjca.org more information.

Ways to get in the workforce

  • Summer Youth Program (Ages 16-24)
  • Job Corps Orientation, first Tuesday of each month at 5:30.
  • Program Line: (813) 559-1768