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The mission of the Century Center for Economic Opportunity (CCEO) YouthBuild is to unleash the intelligence and positive energy of low-income young adults to rebuild their communities and their lives. CCEO serves disadvantaged, at-risk youth ages 16-24 by helping them complete their high school education while simultaneously providing job training and leadership development as they rebuild the community and their own lives with a commitment to work, education, family and citizenship. Through their year long commitment in YouthBuild, students gain hands-on work skills and life skill training. Staff, volunteer and community partners push each student to their fullest potential. CCEO YouthBuild provides the necessary love, respect and support each young person needs by helping them take control and ownership of their future.

CCEO was established in 1979. Initially, its purpose was to promote the participation of women and minorities in employment and business development opportunities while the Century Freeway, I-105, was being built through South Los Angeles. In 1994 the YouthBuild program was created in Gardena, CA and two years ago moved to Lennox, CA. Lennox and its adjacent communities is an underserved, under represented, densely populated area with high gang activity, low education levels and high unemployment. The residents between the ages of 18 to 24 are almost three times more likely to lack a high school diploma than other youth in the U.S. CCEO's YouthBuild program in Lennox is helping young adults in the area get another chance to help transform their lives so that they can become "leaders" who can take responsibility to make sure that things go right for themselves, their families and their communities. 

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