POETA Connects Youth to Opportunities
MasterCard has supported Trust for the Americas since 2013 to develop solutions for multiple challenges faced by youth. The Center has historically supported the POETA program, a regional initiative, driven through community centers, focused on providing youth with vocational, business, and entrepreneurial skills. POETA centers offer young people access to computer facilities and training in computer applications and job readiness. The aim is to give youth the financial and business skills they need to make sound financial decisions and the core competencies that are crucial to obtain employment, further their education or start their own business.
With MasterCard’s support, in 2014 Trust continued the program in four centers in Brazil, Sao Paulo (Bresser, Santo Andre and Santana de Parnaiba), Rio de Janeiro (Morro dos Macacos), and expanded to offer new centers in Mexico City (Minas de Cristo-Delegacion Alvaro Obregon) and Bogota, Colombia ( Ciudad Bolívar). The expanded project is expected to reach 600 youth, empowered through training, and offer 6,000 community members access to the POETA Centers’ computers and other services in the just first year. Those impacted will eventually grow to 3,000 empowered youth and 18,000 community members provided Center access over the course of 3 years.