Last updated: July 18. 2013 7:05PM - 107 Views
Ralph B. Davis
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PRESTONSBURG — A Floyd County-based drug-prevention organization will receive nearly $400,000 to provide math turoring and drug abuse prevention education for at-risk students.


UNITE Service Corps, based in Prestonsburg, is one of 10 AmeriCorps affiliates statewide receiving the funding, as part of an annual grant competition by the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), a public-private partnership that engages Americans of all ages in service. CNCS announced the grants in June. The remaining programs are funded through formula grant funds that are awarded based on state population.


UNITE Service Corps, which is an educational arm of Operation UNITE, will received $390,000 to employ 30 full-time drug education coordinators within their service site schools in Eastern Kentucky.


AmeriCorps is a national service program administered by the Kentucky Commission on Community Volunteerism and Service (KCCVS) in the Cabinet for Health and Family Services (CHFS). Members serve faith-based and nonprofit organizations to meet critical educational, environmental and safety needs.


CHFS Secretary Audrey Tayse Haynes said the funding will improve lives.


“Through these grants, local citizens are addressing local needs,” she said. “One hundred percent of this money goes directly to strengthen these community programs.”


The Kentucky programs receiving grants include 496 full- and part-time members. Their projects will last nine months to one year, and most begin this fall.


KCCVS Executive Director Eileen Cackowski said the grants will help program members contribute more to their communities.


“We are thrilled to be selected and eager to start getting things done,” she said. “In this time of economic hardship, service and volunteering is more important than ever. These AmeriCorps members and the volunteers they mobilize will help us expand our reach and impact.”


On a national level, AmeriCorps engages 80,000 Americans of all ages and backgrounds in service to meet critical needs. Members serve through more than 14,000 organizations in rural and urban communities throughout the nation. Among other accomplishments, AmeriCorps members last year mobilized 3.4 million community volunteers, and tutored, mentored or served more than 3.5 million disadvantaged youth.


AmeriCorps members may serve one or two years. Upon completion of their service, members are eligible for an education award equal to the Pell grant, currently $5,550 that can be used to pay back student loans or cover tuition costs. Since AmeriCorps began in 1994, more than 7,800 Kentucky residents have served more than 7.2 million hours and have qualified for Segal AmeriCorps Education Awards totaling more than $25 million.


For more information about Kentucky’s AmeriCorps programs or AmeriCorps projects, call Program Officer Andrea Sieloff toll-free (800) 239-7404, ext. 4116, or visit the KCCVS website at www.volunteerKY.ky.gov.


Other groups receiving funding include:


• ATEAM - $741,782


Sponsor: Barren County School District (Glasgow/Owensboro)


Members: 56 full-time


ATEAM Members serve elementary through high school students in partnership with supportive schools and involved communities to provide tutoring and mentoring assistance to aid in the prevention of student dropouts and support post-secondary education and workforce readiness.


• Build Corps - $598,482 (funded by competitive grant)


Sponsor: Homeless & Housing Coalition of Kentucky (Frankfort)


Members: 45 full-time


Build Corps is a statewide program in which members impact their communities through homelessness prevention, housing placement services, and low income housing construction and repair. Members also assist homeless and economically disadvantaged Kentuckians prepare for and recover from disasters.


• Economic Empowerment Corps - $130,000 (funded by competitive grant)


Sponsor: Kentucky Domestic Violence Association (Frankfort)


Members: 10 full-time


Economic Empowerment Corps is a statewide program in which members serve as economic empowerment specialists, volunteer and community outreach specialists and youth programming specialists serving those who are survivors of domestic violence.


•FRYSC Corps - $445,976 (funded by competitive grant)


Sponsor: Ohio Valley Educational Cooperative (Frankfort)


Members: 25 full-time, 10 half-time, 30 quarter-time


FRYSC Corps Members, serving under the supervision of Family Resource and Youth Services Center (FRYSC) coordinators, provide reading tutoring for academically at-risk students in Central Kentucky.


•Kentucky College Coaches - $266,000


Sponsor: Northern Kentucky University Research Foundation (Highland Heights)


Members: 20 full-time


Kentucky College Coaches members serve as college coaches in statewide program designed to increase the number of low-income and underserved students who graduate from high school, enroll in postsecondary institutions and earn a college degree.


• Kentucky Service Corps - $40,000 (Education Award Program, funded by competitive grant)


Sponsor: Northern Kentucky University Research Foundation (Highland Heights)


Members: 145 quarter-time, 55 minimum-time


Kentucky Service Corps members are committed college students and citizens mobilizing to provide critical service to nonprofits, schools, local and state government agencies across the commonwealth.


• MSU Corps - $305,900


Sponsor: Morehead State University (Morehead)


Members: 23 full-time


MSU Corps members provide reading tutoring for academically at-risk students utilizing the “Great Leaps” reading curriculum and recruit and train community volunteers to be reading tutors. Members develop and demonstrate skills in tutoring, civic engagement and volunteer recruitment in Eastern Kentucky.


• REACH Corps - $221,000


Sponsor: Jefferson County Public Schools (Louisville)


Members: 17 full-time


REACH Corps members serve in elementary and middle schools’ Family Resource and Youth Services Centers (FRYSC) to assist students who are showing signs of chronic absenteeism as well as providing assistance to families who are facing multiple economic, educational and health challenges that have an impact on a student’s success in school.


• Senior Connections - $390,000 (funded by competitive grant)


Sponsor: Green River Area Development District (Owensboro)


Members: 30 full-time


Senior Connections members seek to improve the quality of life for at-risk, low-income elderly by providing in-home assistance with chores, home repairs, home management, caregiver relief, benefit counseling and home safety education. Members initiate, implement and participate in senior-centered activities, are trained in disaster response and assist in local community projects in Western Kentucky.


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