Programs: After School l Drop-Out Prevention l Teen Pregnancy Prevention l Healthy Living

Preparing Youth for Responsible Adulthood

2012 Program Slideshow. Roll over to see more.

The Opening Doors to the Future program serves New York City Latino or African American public high school students. The overarching goal of the Program is to encourage students to be responsible contributing members of society and leaders in their families and communities. Intensive counseling services and life-skills workshops support high school youth at a critical juncture in their social and emotional development.


Relationship, life skills and parenting workshops

Are designed to improve participants’ abilities to resolve conflicts, understand social-emotional aspects of sexuality and relationship dynamics, address issues related to parenthood, maintain healthy relationships and improve their confidence.


Financial literacy workshops

Are designed to teach financial management strategies that enable participants to improve their economic status and be good fathers and partners. Workshops include topics such as banking, budgeting, credit, avoiding debt and the importance of saving.


College and career exposure

Professional development workshops teach students the nuts and bolts of resume and cover letter writing, interview skills and how to develop talking points for networking. CHCF takes participants on college trips, college fairs and career days at partner companies, offering unique opportunities for students to explore their career and professional interests.


The internship component

Places a core group of participants in paid internships at partner companies to expose young people to an office experience. CHCF trains participants on time management skills and appropriate office protocols and behaviors. CHCF selects interns based on their interest, consistent participation in other elements of the program, a thoughtful application and an interview.


Mentorship and counseling

This component is based on peer modeling and mutual aid support. Program staff provide individual and group counseling and guidance to participants, as well as referrals to services and resources, including medical, housing, mental health and social services.


 

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Meet Joseph Rosa: Opening Doors Alumnus

Joseph Rosa is CHCF’s IT Consultant and an alumnus of the Opening Doors to the Future Responsible Fatherhood Program. CHCF recruited Joseph into the program in 2012 when he was a 17-year-old high school senior—in his words: “a child with a goal but no true path to get there.” A close family member was incarcerated throughout his youth and Joseph grew up around unappealing outcomes. [/2_3]
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Joseph G. Rosa II (Cropped)[/1_3]
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“I didn’t see anything interesting in the streets. Everything was just negative. I was robbed not too far from P.S. 59 my freshman year of high school. My neighborhood is near Hunt’s Point—considered one of the worst in the Bronx. There are groups of people looking for trouble around every corner.” Joseph had achieved the majority of credits required to graduate by the time he reached his senior year, leaving him with little to do outside of class time—and therefore vulnerable to the streets he sought to avoid.

CHCF helped him transform those free school hours into an investment in his future. As a participant in the Responsible Fatherhood Program in the Spring of 2012, Joseph met business leaders from top New York companies, including NBC and Chase. Speaking with these accomplished men and women—some of whom had grown up in rough neighborhoods or difficult situations—convinced Joseph that he could carry himself upward with hard work and diligence. He asked himself, “If they can come from literally the bottom and be on top, why can’t I?”

But it was his internship in the IT Department at Alliance Building Services that opened Joseph up to his current career path. “Matt and John Scimeca—my two coworkers from the IT Department at Alliance [Building]—they became mentors for me as to what I wanted to do for myself, seeing that I did have a love for technology.”

From 2012-2014, Joseph worked in CHCF’s IT department. He is currently employed for a major, international computer manufacturer.