Children’s Services Council approves funds for South County ‘Rites of Passage’ program and recognizes responsible fatherhood graduates
LAUDERHILL, FL — In an effort to reduce risk factors associated with delinquency, violence, victimization, school failure, teen pregnancy and other unsafe behaviors, at the February meeting the Children’s Services Council of Broward County (CSC) approved approximately $200,000 in leveraged funds to implement a five week “Rites of Passage” summer program provided by for the Community Reconstruction Housing Corporation (CRHC). The Afrocentric model program aims at strengthening protective factors and positive decision making skills, and is delivered at Gulfstream, McNicol, Olsen and Pines Middle School.
The funding will allow 45 disadvantaged middle school students to participate on a year-round basis beginning in March, 2014 and benefit from high quality tutoring and academic supports, life skills training, mentoring and role modeling, family engagement and positive recreational activities. Other organizations partnering in this effort are the Broward County Schools and the Broward Sheriff’s Office.
At the same meeting, the Council recognized the latest graduation class of the Responsible Fatherhood Initiative, funded by the CSC and the Jim Moran Foundation and implemented by Healthy Mothers Healthy Babies of Broward County. The program consists of 12 weekly presenter-led group sessions focusing on key fathering characteristics and issues such as life skills, men’s health, and legal concerns. The next 24 sessions consist of individualized, in-home case management using the 24/7 Dad A.M. ™ and 24/7 Dad P.M.™ curricula. These in-home services help fathers hone their parenting skills and refine the roles they have in the lives of their children and family.
Peer mentors maintain weekly contact with participating dads and family building activities and service projects provide opportunities for these fathers to give back to their community. To date, more than 90 men have graduated the program, with many of them taking on mentoring roles for incoming participants.
The Children’s Services Council of Broward is an independent taxing authority which was established by a public referendum on Sept. 5, 2000, which, through Public Act, Chapter 2000-461 of the laws of Florida, authorized the Council to levy up to 0.5 mills of property taxes. The role of the Council is to provide the leadership, advocacy and resources necessary to enhance children’s lives and empower them to become responsible, productive adults through collaborative planning and funding of a continuum of quality care.