A group of Tri-Valley students committed to helping those most financially impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic has launched a nonprofit organization designed to get the unemployed back to work – and back on their feet.

Called the Genuine Global Foundation, the organization is the brainchild of Foothill High School freshman Yash Kaushik. It’s comprised of students from Foothill, Amador and California high schools and other Bay Area high schools, who are working with LinkedIn to secure free premium packages for those in need. The packages, which are the equivalent of a three-month subscription, offer jobseekers more reach to potential employers among other tools to secure employment.

“We have joined hands to help people that are affected financially by COVID-19,” said Yash. “As you already know, many businesses are being shut down, and lots of people are losing their jobs. I wanted to find a way to help out my local community and get people back to work.”

The group is also spreading the word about their organization via Nextdoor, Reddit, local Patch sites, Instagram, GoFundMe and the development of their own app.

“We felt like LinkedIn was an easy site for people to access and use, and (LinkedIn) has also given us a few accounts to get us going, so we are very appreciative,” said Yash. “Things are going very well.”

The LinkedIn project is divided into teams that run the program, which includes an interview process where individuals provide proof of their educational background, work history and current circumstances.

“We talk to them, determine their needs and walk them through the process,” said Yash.

While anyone who is unemployed is welcome and encouraged to apply, foundation co-founder Abhyudaya Srivastava, a sophomore at California High School in San Ramon, said the immediate focus is on those most in need.

“We are targeting people who are not earning enough to provide for their families or put food on the table and a roof over their heads,” said Abhyudaya. “A lot of people have the requirements and degrees and experience, but it is hard right now for them to go out and get jobs, so that is where we want to help.”

Since officially launching the project two weeks ago, the group has raised over $1,200 and garnered a waiting list of prospective clients.

Now the foundation is looking for help on the backside of the project.

“We are recruiting for donors and volunteers to assist with the project,” said Abhyudaya. “We are looking for a lot of additional help.”

The LinkedIn project is the group’s first foray into the nonprofit sector, but it certainly won’t be their last. As the foundation grows, so will their scope. Plans are already in the works for a new project called Delivery Slot, a Chrome web extension and accompanying app that will allow customers to filter through all the local delivery apps and websites and choose an open slot that best fits their needs. Yash and Abhyudaya’s team of programmers will work behind the scenes to ensure an easy, user-friendly experience.

“It feels great helping people, and it is amazing to see that a thought that we had has turned into a real thing,” said Abhyudaya. “We’re hoping to make a real difference to a lot of people.”

For more information or to donate to the Genuine Global Foundation, visit www.projectgenuine.com.