What is Our Piece of the Pie?
A youth business program that offers life skills
training and job opportunities for youths in Hartford,
Bristol and New Britain.
Paraphrased from The Hartford Courant, June
Our Piece of the Pie of Hartford works with DCF, the
Department of Labor and the state office for workforce
competitiveness. The program offers life skills training
and job opportunities for youths in Hartford, Bristol
and New Britain.
Youths of Our Piece of the Pie build boats, publish a
community newspaper or work in a greenhouse work. They
also learn how to prepare for job interviews, write a
resume and they have the chance to meet local employers
for possible work. Youths are paid a small stipend for
their work. Programs are run as a business and some have
turned a profit.
Our Piece of the Pie Goals
Create youth work opportunities to teach students
about business, entrepreneurship, and careers.
Teach the importance of in school and on-the-job
learning experiences critical to the achievement of
Create year around youth businesses to provide
products or services needed by the local community.
Youth businesses provide vehicles for hands-on
learning and are managed by teams of students,
college undergraduates (role models) and adults
Grow leaders for OPP and the community.
Our Piece of the Pie Ventures
Not Drugs uses the musical talents
an African-drumming performance group from
Trinidad-Tobago. Ajali teaches youth participants to
construct and play the "djembe", a drum from West
Africa. Youth participants learn to construct the drum
from a shell to a finished product worth $500, put on a
concert and record a CD.
|| Jam (junior art
makers) a youth art company where youth aged 10-18
create art-related products. Jam youth participate in
design, marketing sales, packaging and distribution of
products and share profits earned.
|| River Wrights Boat
Builders is a youth boat building company where youth
learn the exact art of building boats and other small
crafts. They gain valuable work experience and life
skills including basic math, decision-making,
problem-solving, and teamwork The wooden boats are sold
or donated to not-for-profit camps.
|| To the Hand, a
nail-design training program, teaches youth about basic
manicure technology, health/safety concerns, careers and
principles in nail design. Youth learn beginning,
intermediate, and advanced skills in manicure design and
entrepreneurship. Graduates are placed in part-time jobs
at local salons.
|| Crunch Time is a
sound recording business located in Hartford,
Participants learn basic functions of a miscing board,
formatting popular songs and using multiple sequences.
The program uses a 16-week curriculum of integrated
Urban Greens is
collaboration between The Gathering Place, Hartford
Public Schools ad OPP. Students receive instruction on
horticulture, nutrition, health, and hands-on experience
raising herbs and vegetables at the Hartford greenhouse.
Students utilize OPP's entrepreneurial and
pre-employment training to build a profit pool earned
from the sale of herbs and vegetables to local
|| Echoes from the
Street is a youth newspaper company. While much training
focuses on reporting fundamentals, youth also cover the
basics of writing and literacy skills, Other skills
include photography, design, computer and internet-aided
reporting, interviewing and transcription.