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Breaktime ( is a Boston-based nonprofit working to end young adult homelessness through purposeful transitional employment and financial empowerment. We empower young adults experiencing homelessness to secure stable employment and permanent housing while bolstering the health of their communities.

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Connor Schoen and Tony Shu, met as undergraduate students at Harvard while working at the Y2Y Shelter for young adults experiencing homelessness. After noticing young adults staying at the shelter wanted to work and learning that stable employment is the most critical factor in achieving stable housing, they founded Breaktime in 2018 with a mission to break the cycle of young adult homelessness. 
Breaktime continues to evolve and grow. From developing the Breaktime Cafe to growing our Double Impact Initiative during the pandemic, our team has remained relentlessly committed to launching the careers of young adults experiencing homelessness. Through the Double Impact Initiative, we learned that empowering young adults to serve their own communities is critical in fostering purpose, dignity, and hope. Today, Breaktime continues to push forward our unique model of purposeful transitional employment. 

Breaktime’s model centers around a 15-week purposeful transitional employment program called the Double Impact Initiative. This program ensures that participants (Associates) are (1) equipped with the job skills and financial stability they need for long-term success; (2) engaged in meaningful work in their community; and (3) empowered to see their own potential as a young person. Through this early intervention, Breaktime combats long-term chronic homelessness and supports young adults in becoming changemakers in their communities. Ultimately, the Double Impact Initiative accomplishes two goals: launching the careers of young adults experiencing homelessness and empowering them through purposeful transitional employment that promotes the health and wellbeing of their communities. 

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