About JA in the Americas
The opportunity: By channeling the natural entrepreneurial instincts of Latin America’s marginalized youth by building valuable business skills and helping these individuals design, create, manage and sustain their own unique, income-generating enterprises., JA will play a real role in combating poverty in Americas.
JA began operating in The Americas Region in 1955, with the establishment of JA Canada. Then in the 70s JA starts operating in Mexico and Trinidad & Tobago being the first office in the Caribbean. Today, JA Americas is represented by thirty one countries* working to positively impact the continent’s economic prosperity by developing entrepreneurship, workforce readiness, and financial literacy skills in young people living in both urban and rural areas. In 2011, more than 1,100,000 students were benefited from the JA experience.
JA Americas Regional Operations Center
In the year 2011, JA Americas Regional Board decided to create and register JA Americas Foundation as an NGO entity in Uruguay to consolidate its “Regional Operation Center“(ROC). The Americas ROC includes a CEO, one Director of Operations and a Program Manager for the region. Some of its primary responsibilities, as approved by JA Worldwide and The Americas Regional board, are to develop and integrate regional strategies, perform regional fundraising, act as stewards of the JA brand, ensure adequate financing and controls, and develop human capital. This new entity will follow JA Worldwide principles as well as the direction set by its Board Members who are distinctive Business leaders from around the region.
JA Americas is presently in the midst of a rigorous strategic planning process, wherein member nations have agreed upon their 2012 focus—JA will be the partner of choice for businesses, educators, and policymakers around the globe seeking to expand workforce and economic development. We will be widely respected and valued for providing inspiring experiences that promote the skills, understanding, and perspectives youth will need to succeed in a global economy and to become productive contributing members of society.
*Argentina, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Brazil, Bolivia, Canada, Cayman Islands, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Grenada, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Netherlands Antilles, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, Saint Lucia, Trinidad y Tobago, Uruguay, US Virgin Island, Venezuela.
JA Americas Regional Priorities
- Embracing entrepreneurship as our core thematic focus
- Implementing and adapting programs through alternative delivery channels
- Enabling regional integration/sustainability through JA’s Regional Operating Center
- Ensuring program relevance and prioritization to meet the Region’s changing needs
- Defining measurable impact on youth—short, medium and long-term
About Junior Achievement Worldwide
Junior Achievement Worldwide is the world’s largest organization dedicated to educating students about workforce readiness, entrepreneurship, and financial literacy through experiential, hands-on programs. Junior Achievement programs help to prepare young people for the real world by showing them how to generate wealth and effectively manage it, how to create jobs which make their communities more robust, and how to apply entrepreneurial thinking to the workplace. Young people put these lessons into action and learn the value of contributing to their communities.
The worldwide organization annually reaches over ten million young people globally, thanks in part to thousands of future-focused business people, educators, and community leaders who recognize the needs of young people in their own communities. They believe JA programs develop critical skills, and they want to partner with Junior Achievement by volunteering their time, energies, and resources. In this respect, JA has very much been a “grassroots” movement from its beginning.
JA is organized into six regions, each with a Regional Operating Center (ROC) that coordinates and integrates a closely-knit confederation of local operations (Member Nations), which are led by a local board of directors.