our model

  • System-involved youth ages 16-24

  • A paid job to build skills and self-efficacy

  • Youth development and life skills curriculum

  • Unwavering support and advocacy around complex barriers

  • Career services to chart a path to a living wage

1 of 5

"More Than Words gives me honest and true feedback. I’ve had opportunities to take a job seriously and take myself seriously. When I got suspended from school, they gave me a push to get my education, a hard push but for my own good. Now, I’m finding hope in building the life that I wish to have."

- Sameen, Graduate

every purchase empowers youth

As a social enterprise, every time you support our youth run business you are directly supporting our mission of job training and empowerment.



Youth start with comprehensive assessments and 4-12 weeks of deep supportive services to address urgent needs. We track toward nine readiness thresholds in areas like food access, transportation, and housing that will help them get ready for job training.

business job

Young people work ~20 hours per week running our book, clothing, and online social enterprise ventures. They lead shifts, process and ship books, manage the warehouse, handle customer service, and more—gaining important work experience, and self-efficacy.

YOU job

Youth participate in intensive case management as they set and achieve goals for their education, career, and life. Our curriculum helps them achieve milestones on their self-directed career pathway.

“For me, what made More Than Words special was follow-through. A lot of times, adults don’t do what they say they’ll do for you, or they give up when there is a roadblock. When More Than Words said they’d help me with something they did, even when it was hard.”

Janaya, Alumna

outside our walls

Even when young people do their part, they are too often undermined by systems outside our walls. We show up for the conditions of success: standing with youth at court dates, helping with housing, and advocating for transition services.

career services

Young people receive 2+ years of check-ins, help with job search, and career coaching. With Bridge Contracts, we step up to pay living expenses while youth pursue training that will get them into a living wage career.

knocking down walls

We stand with youth in our Power is Yours advocacy group as they shine a light on the racist policies and dysfunctional systems that harm them. Youth meet with legislators, testify at the State House, host forums, and author op-eds, focusing on criminal justice and reforming the child welfare cliff.

data & outcomes

The proof is in the numbers.

Beyond their time here, our youth are working, earning, and engaging in activities that mean a better future for themseves.

  • youth served in FY22 across core program and career services

  • of gradutes productively engaged in work and/or school

  • earned or are on track for High School Diploma or equivalent

  • eligible graduates pursuing post-secondary education

  • in wages earned by youth working at More Than Words

  • working graduates who held a job for 6+ months

"More Than Words gave me so many skills to put on my resume, but I had to be ready to come in and work. That’s the deal. We’re paid for training and personal growth. It’s a support system with so many resources available. At the same time, it only works if you let it because growing through mistakes and showing up for yourself is part of what you’re learning. I don’t think there’s a place that understands that quite as well as More Than Words."

- Christina, Graduate