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News Release    

May 12, 2003

County Executive Announces Youth Asset Grants

Poughkeepsie... County Executive William R. Steinhaus has announced fifteen mini-grant awards totaling $13,000 to promote youth empowerment opportunities within the County. “Our young people have energy, passion and a willingness to contribute to their communities in which they live,” states the County Executive. “When we provide the means and adult support, our youth can be part of community solutions and decision making to improve the quality of life in their neighborhoods and schools. They have enormous potential to make Dutchess County a good place to live.”

The projects range from skill building activities for youth involving the arts and organization or leadership to providing public awareness on relevant youth issues such as healthy relationships and diversity or tolerance of others. Mill Street Loft will organize a team of young women to plan a poetry and spoken word performance called “Listen Up” involving the 150 graduates of the PASWORD program in Poughkeepsie. Beacon City School students will develop three ten-minute video segments to share useful information about the city to be shown on local cable. Mental Health Association will create a multimedia project to generate community conversation about social issues.

In Dover, Youth in Motion’s youth advisory committee will match students with business internship opportunities that provide adult role models and connection to school learning. Spackenkill High School will use the funding to implement the Prudential Youth Leadership training consisting of 30 hours of classroom instruction leading to a student community service project. Pine Plains School District will develop a Diversity Day to help students create a more positive environment.

Other projects will increase positive activities for youth. Literacy Volunteers will create a book club for young males of color in the City of Poughkeepsie. Holiday Hills Teen Center Leaders Club is planning a performance of professional and local bands for youth. Hudson River Sloop Clearwater will train two high school youth interns for one week to assist in an education sail for younger students. St. Andrew Church youth group will organize a coffeehouse style teen night of music and poetry using the theme of “breaking down the stereotypes.”

According to Betsy Brockway, Youth Bureau Executive Director, “The County Legislature, the members of the Criminal Justice Council and the Children’s Services Council have all supported this funding request by County Executive Steinhaus because we all agree youth empowerment opportunities show youth that they are valued by the community. The grant activities offer unique hands-on learning for the youth directly involved in order to benefit others.” The 2003 grants allocations were finalized by the CSC Youth Asset Team and assisted by members of the DC Youth Council. The complete listing of grants are available under “on-line departments: Youth Bureau” on the County’s web page: www.co.dutchess.ny.us.  


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