The City Crew summer job program kicked off this past weekend as Boston area high school students landscaped and cleaned a School Street property in Jamaica Plain.
On April 30, City Realty, a Brighton real estate development and property management firm, began the initiative to place Boston teenagers in summer jobs.
On Saturday nine local boys and girls began part-time jobs ranging from office work to landscaping of the grounds of rental properties, which the firm manages. They will work weekends and after school until the end of the academic year, and then throughout the summer.
“Youth unemployment has been a growing concern across the city,” said Fred Starikov, managing partner of City Realty. “We wanted to give kids an opportunity to use their free time productively.”
Starikov and his partner Steven Whalen have in the past sponsored various programs for the city’s youth such as a recent donation of more than 100 laptop computers in a joint effort with Mayor Marty Walsh’s office. The firm participates in frequent neighborhood clean-up efforts, high school improvement programs, meals for the ill and back-to-school backpack distribution to area children.
In their first week the new “City Crew” teenage employees began working after school and on weekends to help with the maintenance and improvement of properties in Jamaica Plain.
“City Realty Management is a real estate investor in the community who invests in community,” said Brianna Forde of The Base, the Roxbury program for city youth which recommended several of the children for the employment program. “Their goal of changing lives and providing resources and opportunities for urban youth, is a true testament to their leadership.”
“Our team is very excited about this program” said Whalen, who manages City Realty along with Starikov. “Summer jobs are an impactful way for kids to get work experience, make money for school and benefit from focused mentoring.”
Whalen and Starikov said the idea for the summer employment program came as an off-shoot of the firm’s successful “City Kids” initiative, which provides resources and educational experiences to Boston’s school-age children in all neighborhoods.