San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo is convinced that intergenerational programs can tackle community challenges. The city’s Critical Bridge program received a 2017 Encore Prize for bringing older adults into two programs: San Jose Works and San Jose Promise. These new public-private partnerships provide young people from low-income, first-generation and historically underrepresented communities with summer internships and a pathway to community college. Both are adding 50+ adults as champions, guides and role models  — a critical bridge in their pursuit of jobs and continuing education. Within five years, the program plans to engage 1,000 encore volunteer mentors to serve 1,250 youth annually.

Encore Fellows Gisela Bushey and Dima Maklouf Khoury are leading the Critical Bridge rollout. The team is eager to support other cities in connecting encore talent to youth-serving programs by sharing resources and with online tools – so don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Watch Mayor Liccardo (in a Generation to Generation T-shirt) celebrate the Prize and the power of older adults in this Facebook video (starting at 1:30).

Contact: Gisela Bushey

Published: November 15, 2017