Youth Empowerment Project

YEP Works


Primary Program: Trafigura Work and Learn Center, Bike Works & Design Works

YEP is like a second home to me. Somewhere where I can get stuff done, study, kind of like a safe haven for me.”













YEP Works houses the Youth Empowerment Project’s work readiness programs and transition services to help youth connect to job and training opportunities once they graduate from YEP.

About Trafigura Work and Learn Center

The Trafigura Work & Learn (W&L) Center is funded through the generous anchor support of the Trafigura Foundation as well as local support from Baptist Community Ministries, the United Way of Southeast Louisiana and Capital One Bank. The W&L Center is a job training program for 16 to 24 year olds, where youth earn an educational stipend while working alongside YEP staff. They also gain vital hard and soft skills that help them get and keep jobs. The hard skills offered through the W&L Center include customer service, bicycle repair, and creative digital media training. Youth also gain valuable soft skills such as how to create a resume, interview for a job and build the confidence necessary to help them secure employment and create a positive future for themselves.


The Trafigura Work & Learn Center operates 6-week training cycles during the year, with each cycle running two days a week for a total of eight hours. As part of our customer training curriculum, YEP opened Bike Works (formerly the Work & Learn Retail Store) in December 2013. In September 2016, YEP created Design Works and in December 2016, Thrift Works. You can learn more about our youth-driven businesses by clicking on the logos below.

Since the program’s inception, over 40 percent of graduates have successfully transitioned into employment opportunities.

YEP’s Transition Services

All Youth Empowerment Project clients have the opportunity to work with the Transition Services team to pursue employment, job training programs, or continuing and higher education.

Our Employment Transition Services supports YEP participants who are in search of employment with the opportunity for advancement. The Employment Services Coordinator assists with resume workshops, workforce preparation, and assistance with job placement.

YEP also provides Post-Secondary Transition Services by assisting students with preparing and applying for college, financial aid, and finding the program that best suits their interest. The Post-Secondary Coordinator provides ongoing support to ensure that the student is successful in obtaining a post-secondary credential.