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Date Completed:           April 4, 2009

Avenue of Service:         Community

 

Brief Description of Activity

 

Suspended students have no place to go.   When these kids go back to school, they are so far behind in their studies that it can create a cycle of failure.  Some will drop out of high school altogether.

The Fairfax Partnership for Youth's (FPY's) Support on Suspension (SOS) Program intervenes in this downward spiral.  By establishing a safe day-long study site, in areas where large numbers of students are suspended (such as the Culmore area of FairfaxCounty), SOS helps keep suspended students current in their school work.  It also provides life skills support (e.g. anger management and peer mediation).  SOS interrupts the path of alienation and hopelessness. It can save lives.

This project focused resources to launch a community awareness campaign for the Culmore SOS program and for the formation of the Culmore Community Youth Collaborative (CCYC) that is spearheading the initiative.    Resources were devoted to the design and printing SOS posters (shown above) that will be displayed in schools, libraries, and other public buildings, faith communities, and places of businesses.  Funding will also be used to help update other printed materials.  The purpose of the campaign is to increase knowledge by parents, community leadership, and a diverse community about the benefits of the program.

Increasing adult and youth knowledge of the program is intended to decrease barriers to access services and to increase community engagement.  In so doing it will offer a safe place to be during suspension, decrease the likelihood of crime by suspended students, and decrease risk of learning failures and school drop-outs.

 

Submitted by:    David Eakin                Bettina Lawton

Telephone:         703-938-4271                703-242-1652

e-mail                 david.eakin@cox.net   bettinalawton@cox.net