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Urban Corps of San Diego

Urban Corps is a locally-based nonprofit that provides education and jobs to young adults aged 18-25. The majority of youth employed at Urban Corps are high school drop outs who have little or no job training. At Urban Corps they learn new skills while contributing to the overall quality of life in the San Diego area. Their participation increases the connection these young people feel to their community, their environment, and their own future. When they care about all three, it benefits us all. Urban Corps is proud to have served more than 4,000 youth since 1989.

Mission Statement

The mission of the Urban Corps of San Diego is to provide job training and educational opportunities to young adults, in the fields of conservation, recycling, and community service which will assist these youths in becoming more employable, while protecting San Diego's natural resources and instilling the importance of community involvement.

Latest News: Urban Corps Recycling Totals Through the Roof

Urban Corps of San Diego County is reporting a whopping 48 percent increase in its recycling tonnage for 2007-2008, according to Conservation Services Director Erwin Sanvictores. The local non-profit offers youth job training and an education while putting them to work in the environment, including recycling collection services throughout the county.

“Our recycling department has outdone itself,” says Sanvictores. “Last year we collected 825,521 tons of recyclables compared to an impressive 1,221,812 tons this year. Beverage containers alone accounted for 24 percent of that increase at 931,755 total tons.”

Recycling Manager Eric Wolff attributes the increase to: a 10 percent increase in collection service accounts including two high-yield hotel accounts (Marriott Del Mar and Ivy Hotel); a more aggressive recycling collection program at Qualcomm stadium, and the Urban Corps’ profit-sharing program with schools.

“We have six schools that participate in our profit sharing recycling program and plan on adding four more in the Point Loma cluster by the end of the year,” says Wolff. “The recycling partnership is educational and encourages the next generation to be conservationists. Our top producing school, Rancho Buena Vista, earned $2,500 in scrap value and CRV last year. With a profit like this, students quickly see the value of saving bottles and cans.”

After nearly 20 years and five different locations, Urban Corps has purchased and renovated its main headquarters and charter school, making every effort in building construction to foster energy-efficiency. The green-building includes skylights to allow for plenty of natural light, low-flow sensory operated water features, and a variety of other conservation features. The facility serves as a fully integrated, green modeled state-of-the art learning laboratory for Corps members.

Phase two of the Urban Corps building renovation calls for a LEED certified recycling education center which will serve as a training facility for Corps members and the citizens of San Diego County. The center will also serve as a multi-purpose resource for the entire San Diego region for educating, training and demonstrating how recycling and conservation: preserves natural resources; reduces pollution; reduces waste hauling costs/expenses; and employs at-risk youth. The center will include fun, hands-on educational exhibits as well as demonstrations on closed-loop recycling.