Thursday, April 29, 2010

New CNCS Funding for Youth Engagement Zones

On April 23rd, the Corporation for National and Community Service announced a new initiative to create Youth Engagement Zones that “will increase students’ academic and civic engagement while improving the odds that they will stay in school and graduate from high school. “ The initiative provides $5.4 million in grants as part of the Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act.

According to a press release from the Corporation: The Corporation for National and Community Service operates under the leadership of Patrick Corvington, formerly of the Annie E. Casey Foundation, and is a federal agency that oversees Senior Corps, AmeriCorps, and Learn and Serve America programs.

The agency anticipates awarding between four and  twelve three-year grants of $300,000 to $450,000 per year to create networks of individuals, organizations and institutions that support the positive development of young people. The grants will provide support for eligible partnerships to build on existing resources and develop coordinated school-based or community-based service-learning opportunities for secondary school students.

Grants will support the establishment or implementation of Youth Engagement Zones to improve student engagement, including student attendance and behavior, and student achievement, graduation rates and college-going rates by:

1. Engaging youth as positive contributors through service-learning to demonstrate the relevance of academic coursework and the value of civic engagement to their educational and personal development;

2. Connecting with citizens from diverse communities, backgrounds and perspectives to provide expanded opportunities to serve; and

3. Building enduring capacity within communities to become more effective at using service as a solution to address pressing challenges.

Applications are due by June 15 at 5 p.m. EDT. Potential applicants should send a letter of intent to apply to by May 28. For further information and instructions on how to apply, click here.

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