San Francisco, CA — Mayor London N. Breed today joined Dr. Sheryl Davis, Executive Director of the Human Rights Commission (HRC), City leaders, sponsors, and community at Chase Center to celebrate this summer’s Opportunities for All (OFA) cohort, which marks the fifth year since the program’s launch in October of 2018.
More than 3,000 youth between the ages of 13-24 apply for placements as interns and fellows with OFA each year. To date, OFA has facilitated more than 10,000 internships and approximately 95% of applicants are young people of color.
Since Mayor Breed welcomed the first OFA cohort in the summer of 2019, the City has seen significant success in helping young people access job and career resources in high-demand industries, including during the COVID-19 pandemic, and is a key part of San Francisco’s economic recovery efforts.
“We know just how important it is for young people to have access to these kinds of opportunities,” said Mayor Breed. “For over five years this program has empowered young San Franciscans to explore, create, and expand their potential. I am proud of the momentum we have built and thank the OFA partners for investing in our kids and their future.”
Mayor Breed's Budget provides $4.8 million in annual funding for OFA. Additionally, in 2022, San Francisco was awarded an $11.8 million grant for OFA from the State, specifically through the Youth Job Corps program, which is a part of Governor Newsom’s #CaliforniansForAll Service Initiative. The State grant runs through 2024.
"It is inspiring to see Opportunities For All fulfill Mayor Breed’s vision," said Dr. Sheryl Davis, Executive Director of the San Francisco Human Rights Commission. "The OFA program offers participants more than just a summer job - it is an initiative focused on creating opportunity for youth to build skills, strengthen social networks, and prepare for work, and it has met those goals. Opportunities For All has a diverse group of alumni, many of whom have graduated college and used the OFA network to gain employment."
“I am ecstatic to once again celebrate the Opportunities For All Interns and Fellows as they work and learn together,” said Sara Williams, Director of OFA. “Every young person in San Francisco deserves the chance to build towards a positive and successful future. We strive to remove those barriers that prevent too many of our youth from having access to economic freedom. Thanks to our amazing partners and sponsors, thousands of youth have the opportunity to build those skills that will prepare them for their journey and make money while doing it.”
Students can participate in OFA as either an intern or a fellow. Interns, ages 13 to 18, participate in paid summer job opportunities either in the public sector, private sector, or with a community-based organization. Past and current program partners who have hosted interns include Bank of America, Google, Dolby, LinkedIn, the San Francisco Giants Community Fund, and Code Tenderloin. For those ages 18 to 24, OFA provides fellowship opportunities, in which transition aged young adults can practice their leadership skills by leading and managing a cohort of interns.
“Since 2019, Google.org has supported Mayor Breed's Opportunities for All program,” said Rebecca Prozan, Google’s Director of State and Local Policy for the West Region. “It's provided us the opportunity to host students on our campus and give them exposure to skilling, resources and potential careers that they may have otherwise not received. We're grateful for the work OFA is doing and excited to continue this work together.”
"We have been honored to partner with Bank of America the past 3 years to provide the opportunity for one student annually to join our Giants Community Fund team,” said Sue Petersen, Executive Director of the Giants Community Fund. “In alignment with the Opportunities for All mission, we have been able to provide these interns with behind-the-scenes access to our unique workplace. This experience in a Major League Baseball team's front office allows them to contribute to real-time non-profit based projects, connect with professionals in the sports industry and explore more of their career aspirations."
“The OFA program has created a vehicle to mentor and prepare interns for professional careers after and during persistence to graduation,” said Christine Williams, Owner and Principal Consultant at Equity Consulting. “This program invests in people and communities by creating opportunities that would ordinarily seem out of reach to motivated individuals. I am honored to have participated in such a well-organized program that promotes positive social impact.”
"As the Executive Director of Code Tenderloin, I firmly believe that investing in comprehensive youth programs during the summer is not just a choice; it is a necessity for the future of San Francisco's youth,” said Donna Hilliard, Executive Director of Code Tenderloin. “By providing engaging opportunities that expose young minds to the dynamic fields of web development and AI robotics, we are equipping them with the tools and knowledge necessary to thrive in the rapidly evolving world of technology. Our commitment to fostering these skills early on will undoubtedly set them on a trajectory for success, empowering them to shape their own destinies and become the innovators and leaders of tomorrow."
Intern placements follow two structures:
- Employment-based opportunities, where private sector companies, public sector departments, and nonprofit organizations host paid work-based internships within their existing workplace structure
- Community Safety Initiative (CSI) opportunities, where interns create and implement community-based projects that aim to address issues of public safety, equity, and expanding opportunities for underserved youth in San Francisco
"My summer as an intern has been a lot of fun and I have been exposed to a lot of new experiences, opportunities, and people," said OFA Intern Marcus Boyden, a 15-year-old Western Addition resident. "I have been able to explore different career paths every Thursday at the OFA Mentor Series and I have enjoyed learning new skills like photography and landscaping at Ella Hill Hutch Community Center where I am placed as an intern in the Community Development Cohort. Every day I look forward to going to my internship because I know I am making a difference in my Fillmore community."
The interns are paid a minimum of $18.93 per hour, and interns earning more than $18.93 per hour are financially supported by their assigned partners. Higher paying internships often have additional qualification, interview, or background check requirements
OFA is administered through the City’s Human Rights Commission in partnership with the Japanese Community Youth Council (JCYC) as OFA’s fiscal sponsor, and Collective Impact, which hosts the majority of OFA’s fellows. A full list of programs and partners may be found here.
To learn more about Opportunities For All, visit Opps4AllSF.org or email email@example.com.