KOB (Kids Off the Block Nonprofit) is located on the south side of Chicago and originally started with 9 kids in Diane Latiker's three bedroom apartment. After 15 years of laboring, Diane currently serves hundreds of youth a year in Roseland, one of the most under-resourced communities in Chicago. KOB is now looking to expand their program and transform the building next door into the TEC Center (Technology, Entrepreneurial, and Career Center). The building has already been purchased, but it is in need of MAJOR restoration, equipment, technology, and programming materials.
The TEC Center will provide a “state-of-the-art” workforce development project, helping to prepare our youth and young adults (ages 15-24) to become equipped for emerging career opportunities through technology, graphic & web coding, clothing design, and entrepreneurship.
Programming at the TEC Center will consist of 10-weeks of instruction and hands on training in web design/coding, graphic design, entrepreneurial workshops and job readiness skills. Youth who complete the program will receive a certificate of completion. In addition, youth will have the option to continue training to gain additional certification with such companies as Cisco and/or Linux. In addition, a portion of the new center will provide programming centered on the performing arts.
Campaign funds will be used to rehab the building they recently purchased and equipment for the new TEC Center. Programs will give youth who attend career job skills. 250 youth will be able to participate per year, along with wraparound services for youth in hardship situations. In addition, the TEC Center will broaden KIDS OFF THE BLOCK’s impact as a beacon of hope for community youth and their families, by offering them an opportunity to change their lives and their livelihoods for decades to come.