Generation Work an Annie E. Casey Initiative

Generation Work is a Partnership Collaborative and Learning Community funded by the Annie E. Casey Foundation. This national initiative is designed to combine Positive Youth Development, Demand Driven Strategies and Racial Equity and Inclusion to improve youth and young adult employment outcomes. In December 2015 Philadelphia’s partnership; which includes  JOIN, PYN, The Training Fund and YouthBuild Philly, was among the 5 cities awarded  this 4 year grant, 8 year learning community. With this grant Casey also provides a number of tactical supports in partnership with ChildTrends, Aspen Institute and MDRC, as well as an online forum and bi-annual in person meetings.
Core Team of Partners:

Generation Work Philadelphia will improve employment outcomes for youth and young adults, aged 18-29, by creating a robust, strategically-aligned career pathway system, inclusive of employers, workforce agencies and funders, that supports and enables access to sector-specific career paths  in quality jobs* (Quality Job Definition, Figure 2).

Our Vision: To ignite a workforce system that is equitable across race by applying a racial equity lens to best practices in demand driven workforce, positive youth development and supportive services.

Our Goal: Increase quality job opportunities and retention for Young Adults in Healthcare, Early Childhood Education, Hospitality/Retail, and Public Services.

in collaborative partnership with Philadelphia Works, Office of Workforce Development; including Office of Adult Education & Department of Commerce Talent Division

The Philly Framework:                                                                                      At the program level, we and our partners recognize certain shared practices that contribute to positive labor market outcomes for youth and young adults. The shared best practices we have identified are described by the “Philadelphia Framework,” a continually-evolving set of practices and norms in sector-based youth workforce development which we will use as a tool to drive and organize our capacity-building work. The Framework represents an approach to programming that embeds Best Practices from workforce development and Positive Youth Development to build young people’s social and human capital, aiming towards not just an initial job placement but also long-term career growth and personal development. (see Figure 1)



Figure 1

Philly Framework


Targeted Industries:
Generation Work Philadelphia will initially target the following industries; Healthcare and human services, Retail, Public services, and Early Childhood Education. These sectors were selected based on the sector expertise of the Generation Work Partners, as well as the existing employer buy-in of these industries. These are industries which already employ large numbers of young people in jobs with Career Pathway potential. Opportunities in additional sectors will be identified through The Career Pathways Asset Mapping and other existing Career Pathways (as defined by CLASP)*.

Three Pronged Strategy

  • Increase practitioners’ capacity to implement – with quality and fidelity – all elements of the Philadelphia Framework.
  • Increase the availability and suitability of funding to effectively support the Philadelphia Framework
  • Increase employers’ capacity to contribute to and fully participate in the Philadelphia Framework

*Career Pathway as defined by the Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP): career pathways offer clear education, training, credentials, and support services; multiple entry points; and multiple exit points.


Figure 2

JQ Def

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This collaborative is funded by the Annie E. Casey Foundation. We thank them for their support but acknowledge that the findings and conclusions presented in this website are those of the author(s) alone, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Foundation.

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