LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- YouthBuild Louisville has received a significant grant from the U.S. Department of Labor.

The organization will use the $1.5 million grant to expand its services. 

Right now, YouthBuild is wrapping up a $2 million expansion, which includes a new SummerWorks job center in Smoketown as well as a new fitness center. 

The grant was announced Monday morning at a news conference attended by Gov. Andy Beshear, Mayor Greg Fischer, Congressman John Yarmuth and Metro Councilwoman Barbara Sexton Smith.

"With this award, on top of existing resources, YouthBuild has an opportunity to do even more," Beshear said.

YouthBuild Louisville provides job training, vocational certification, soft-skill training and other services for at-risk youth. The grant will help YouthBuild serve an additional 10 to 12 youth in its year-round program. The goal is to help young adults achieve academic benchmarks and certifications, inspiring them to reach for lifelong success with a commitment to work.

YouthBuild provides services for at-risk-youth between the ages of 16 and 24.

"We've consistently out-paced the nation in terms of our progress," said Lynn Rippy, President and CEO of YouthBuild Louisville.

Rippy said the grant was awarded based on a history of success and the expansion.

Taylor Clark, a Youthbuild graduate, said it prevented her from falling through the cracks, even though she dropped out of high school.

"Since graduating last June, I have now enrolled in JCTC's nursing program and am now working towards my RN degree," Clark said. "This past year has been the best year that I could ever have imagined."

The $1.5 million grant from the U.S. Labor Department is one of 67 grants totaling $85 million awarded across the country. 

Click here if you or someone you know is interested in taking part in YouthBuild Louisville's programs. 

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