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Uber helps drive youth success


Uber helps drive youth success

Teens standing with an adult leader
Teens standing with an adult leader

Media Release

SEATTLE—December 3, 2019—The Seattle Housing Authority is the recipient of a 2020 Uber Community Impact Initiative grant worth $20,000, which will primarily be used by residents participating in SHA’s youth engagement programs. 

“The Seattle Housing Authority appreciates support from Uber in meeting the transportation needs of our young residents, who might otherwise not be able to participate in important development opportunities,” said SHA Executive Director, Andrew Lofton. 

In 2019, Uber provided a $10,000 grant to help SHA residents. More than 550 Uber rides, covering more than 3,300 miles, transported seniors with mobility issues to healthcare appointments and delivered youth to career exploration events, job readiness trainings and life skills workshops.

Uber drivers transported SHA’s young residents to workshops where they were able to apply for the Free Application for Federal Student Aid and complete college applications to transition into higher education. Rides to employment events enabled youth to gain confidence, improve their interview skills, create resumes and apply for employment. Many of these teens are now employed and are the first generation in their families to pursue a college education.

Using the Uber rides, aspiring law students toured the University of Washington School of Law, its law library and courtrooms; others visited medical clinics and met with healthcare professionals; and some attended coding workshops where they received hands-on training and engaged with technology professionals. 

Thirty-two of these young residents now serve on a Youth Leadership Board which has started a movement that is transforming the lives of youth in SHA communities. They produced the first youth-led Seattle Teen Summit to encourage high school students from across Seattle to serve their communities, develop strong leadership skills and challenge injustice. 

They developed “Teen Chill,” which provides a safe space for youth to engage in positive activities, get holistic support and build community with peers and adults; and they hosted Youth Employment and Resource Fairs, where more than 100 youth found summer employment.

Uber made possible a youth-developed PUMP (Pop Up Market Program) where students are mentored by local business owners and given entrepreneurial opportunities. One successful venture, Wired Cafe, is an entirely youth-run business serving drinks such as smoothies, green juices, tea and espresso, using mobile equipment at community events. 

In the same spirt that Uber is donating to the communities they serve, the young leaders are donating all profits from their micro business to fund educational scholarships for youth in their communities. 

More information about Uber’s Community Impact Initiative is available at

Media contact:

Kerry Coughlin
Seattle Housing Authority