November 2017

Tremont Robertson, a Youth Conservation Corps member from Waukegan volunteering at the event by passing out canned items, said he was happy to take part.  “It feels good to be able to give food to the people who fought for us,” Robertson said.   See the video and read more…

NBC Chicago
Chicago Tribune



July 2017

Thank you to YCC overall for the on-going support of the Summer Conservation Program and thank you in particular for attending the Board meeting on Wednesday.

Attached is a photo from the Board meeting with the two YCC participants that spoke (Assistant Crew Leader, Chris Shannon of Mundelein and Crew Member, Naomi Zilligen of Lindenhurst).

I will be out of town next week, and not able to attend the tour with you, so I wanted to take the opportunity now to say thank you for everything that YCC does to support the Summer Conservation Program.

Thank you,

John E. Nelson, P.E.
Director of Operations & Infrastructure, Lake County Forest Preserves

June 2017 – YCC Award winner at Lake County Housing Authority Gala

It was a great honor to attend Lake County Housing Authority gala on Friday night. However, it was then just a phenomenal night when YCC was presented with an award for being the Youth Advocate of the Year. Special call out to Robert Shears, Giovanna Gutierrez, and Fred Williams from the Youth Conservation Corps










January 2017 – Saying Goodbye after Teaching Young People

The whole program was designed as a transformational experience for an oppressed young person.  The fact that we’ve been able to spread it to hundreds of places, that in itself is a great achievement.  The group changed the lives of thousands of young people who had been imprisoned, were unemployed or had not earned high school diplomas. YouthBuild put them into a classroom and to work, often building affordable housing in their communities.

Full Article

October 2016 – YCC HVAC Team with Rep. Bob Dold

As a small business owner myself, I know that far too often politicians in Springfield and Washington make life more difficult for our local business owners. Burdensome red tape and a tax code that works for only a select few are hurting our economy and suppressing innovation.

Watch the Video

July 2016 – Daily Herald –  YCC in Lake County offers more than summer work

The Youth Conservation Corps program entails more than working outside, but the “offices” where other lessons are learned can be pretty majestic.  Based at six locations in the Lake County Forest Preserve District system, the crews involved in the eight-week summer program do construction and maintenance projects and spend one day a week learning about natural resources off-site.

Full Article

May 2016 – Chicago Tribute – Federal jobs bill advances, could bring pilot program to Waukegan

A federal bill intended to help current welfare recipients find jobs — including a possible pilot project in Waukegan — is expected to be voted on by the House of Representatives this summer.

Full Article

February 2016 – Chicago Tribune – Helmholz Project

Last summer, city officials mulled various rehab approaches before hearing of a unique option: the non-profit Youth Conservation Corps (YCC), known in and around Waukegan for providing job-skills training to at-risk youth, was looking for a true hands-on opportunity.

Full Article

August 2015 – Chicago Tribune – YCC & Urban Farming

Food initiatives are tied into many selfless organizations…in addition to donated plants and leftover seed from the Liberty Prairie Foundation in Grayslake, Green Town received great help from … YCC (Youth Conservation Corps), “doing the heavy lifting”.

Full Article

August 2015 – Disaster Recover Teams

A day after the tornado hit the Wildwood, Grayslake, and Gages Lake area on August 2nd, the Youth Conservation Corps sprang into action along with BBQ’d Productions owner Kris Schoenberger and his wife. State Representative Sam Yingling presented the Good Neighbor Business Award to Schoenberger who generously provided food to people whose homes were damaged and to first responders. In between cooking and coordinating deliveries from his restaurant, Schoenberger also called out to area grocery stores to get more donations brought in.

Watch Video

March 2015 – Chicago Tribune – U.S. Rep Robert Dold

“This bill will help these people find jobs and gain valuable work skills so they no longer need to rely on federal assistance, while also allowing businesses to hire more employees.”

Full Article

June 2015 – Juvenile Justice Information Exchange

Conservation corps are a descendant of the Civilian Conservation Corps, created during the Great Depression by President Franklin Roosevelt to provide work for the huge number of unemployed men across the nation. It allows youth to reintegrate into the community in a really positive way.

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April 2015 – United States Department of Agriculture

Youth Conservation Corps creates jobs for United States citizens, ages 15 to 18, across the nation, in national forests, national parks, wildlife refuges and other public lands.  It equips young people with skills for a new career, while awakening a love for America’s Great Outdoors in them.  They work outdoors, learn about conservation stewardship, get trained in restoration skills necessary for field work, and develop a work ethic and interpersonal communication skills.

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July 2014 – ABC News

The future of our environment depends upon the actions we all take today. The national Youth Conservation Corps has been laying the seeds for change for a while now and recently picked up where they left off last year. It’s difficult and often thankless work, but the young adults that make up the corps are starting to realize the importance of protecting our environment at this unique summer job.

Full Article

 January 2014 – Center for American Progress

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt so rightly declared in 1934: “No country, however rich, can afford the waste of its human resources. Demoralization caused by vast unemployment is our greatest extravagance.” During the Great Depression, policymakers chose to implement what were dubbed work relief programs, such as the Civilian Conservation Corps, to dramatically reduce unemployment.

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March 2013

For one week every year, communities and nonprofit organizations rally together to honor AmeriCorps members, AmeriCorps alums, and the hard work these men and women do for our country. During this year’s AmeriCorps Week, held March 9 – 17, Youth Conservation Corps of Lake County (YCC) joined with other area nonprofits to salute local AmeriCorps members at a ceremony in Waukegan, Illinois’s Robert Sabonjian Plaza.

Full Article