Celebrating MLK Day with R’Club

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Preventing Crime is about more than locks and security planning. It is about community. That is why our Crime Prevention Program participated in a MLK Day of Service project by reading to toddlers at a local R’Club Daycare Center. Each year, the Retired & Senior Volunteer Program of Pinellas Opportunity Council, Inc. (RSVP) celebrates the “Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service” by conducting a special “Reading Project” in all of the Head Start/Early Head Start Program Centers throughout Pinellas County. Through this project, RSVP and community volunteers read the book “Happy Birthday, Martin Luther King” to three and four year olds, particularly stressing and discussing Dr. King’s timeless themes of non-violence, equality, and peaceful co-existence – values that are important to learn at an early age.

The best part is, following the reading and brief discussion, each child receives a personalized children’s book of their very own – generously donated by numerous local companies, organizations, and friends – in order that they might continue the adventure of reading and learning at home.

Promoting basic literacy is one of the ways crime is reduced in our communities. To find out more about our programs and opportunities for service, call the Pinellas County Urban League at (727) 327-2081.

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BOBCPP Attends Mavericks High Community Vendor Fair

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On Thursday March 8, 2012 staff participated as a vendor in the Maverick High School Community Resource Fair from 9:30 AM until 2:30 PM.  Filling in for the Pinellas County Urban League’s Career Connection Center, staff had a great time interacting with students, faculty and administrators at this unique educational facility.  With the resource fair serving as a platform for disseminating general organizational information and offering specifics about programs interesting to youth , this opportunity was a good match for the BOBCPP. Staff is grateful for the assistance of Ms. Paysha Royal, a student at Mavericks High School, for her work gathering student signatures, stuffing bags and offering various handouts provided to her classmates. 

 

Mavericks High Schools were established to provide an educational choice to students who have dropped out of school or may be in danger of dropping out. Using 21st Century technology and a focus on individualized attention, Mavericks High Schools offer students, who are challenged by the traditional approach to learning, the opportunity to earn a state-recognized high school diploma. This high-tech high provides students, ages 15-21, a strong research-based curriculum and support for pursuing continuing education or a suitable vocation.   Mavericks High places a high degree of importance upon core curriculum toward the achievement of competency in the fundamental subjects that are necessary for gainful employment and/or continuing education. High school graduation is the acknowledgment and the reward for meeting the benchmarks established that define a level of competency in all required high school subject areas. A high school diploma confirms an important and recognized milestone of academic achievement.

 

Students who have elected to attend Mavericks High Schools, like so many students in urban areas, face many challenges.  Administrators provided the fair to expose the students to a wide variety of resource options that exist to help them in achieving their goals.  Also represented at the event were the Pinellas County Public Health Office, Sickle Cell Anemia Society, Operation PAR, Pinellas County Supervisor of Elections, ASAP, and more.  More than most, these students recognize that they control their destiny, and they work hard to ensure personal success.  Consequently, there was a lot of foot traffic to the table.

 

Staff became engaged in the stories of individual students by discussing their goals, listening to their challenges and offering suggestions for surmounting a variety of problems presented.

 

Students demonstrated interest in winning a raffle of a $25.00 Visa gift card.  Sixty-three people became eligible for the drawing.  Ms. Joyce Jones was the selected winner of the raffle, and has picked up her winnings at the League’s headquarters building, located at 333 -31st Street North in Saint Petersburg, Florida.

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Founded in 1977, the Pinellas County Urban League is the premier social service and civil rights organization in Pinellas County.  We are one of the National Urban League’s network of non-profit, community-based affiliates located throughout the united states.  The Urban League is a member agency of United Way since 1981.  The League operates social service programs throughout Pinellas County and serves those in need of career development, education, employment services, tutoring, energy assistance, crime prevention services, health screening and education services and housing weatherization.  More information about the Urban League can be obtained from our website, www.pcul.org or by calling (727) 327-2081.

 

Crime Prevention Program Vocal through St. Petersburg CONA

 

The Pinellas County Urban League, through the Black-on-Black Crime Prevention Program, participated in the 2012 Council of Neighborhood Associations’ (CONA) annual goal setting and planning session on February 4, 2012.  The activity, held at the SunCoast Hospice Center, 3050 1st Avenue South in Saint Petersburg, offers residents the opportunity to influence city priorities by working together and sharing the collective voice of all neighborhood associations.  Mayor Bill Foster set the tone for the meeting by thanking residents for their commitment to the city.  “We want people to love the city,” said Foster.  During his remarks, he stressed the need for more dialog, new ideas and a renewed energy to overcome many of the challenges created by the economic downturn that rippled through the global economy.

Represented by staff and BOBCPP Task Force member, Gershom Faulkner, the program and its constituents spoke in favor of increasing collaboration between CONA and youth groups as a way to strengthen community ties, further reduce crime rates and beautify communities through multiple small-scale projects.  Advocates for increasing neighborhood participation within the Council structure, session participants agreed that CONA must make a greater effort to reach the community with its message and then follow up with training, coaching and resource sharing for communities that need help organizing and managing an association.  Presently, only 32 of the city’s 74 neighborhoods are active within CONA.  The group identified the need to understand why communities fail to participate as a top priority.

Information about CONA is available from its website.  For more information on how the Black-on-Black Crime Prevention Program may assist you, please call (727) 328-1968.