Letter of thanks to SDOP for its funding of The Center for Teen Empowerment

teen-empowerment-logoOn behalf of the youth and adult staff at The Center for Teen Empowerment, we thank you for granting the youth organizers at Teen Empowerment $2,000. This will be used for our second annual Southwest Rochester Peace March on June 14. It is designed to kick off a safe summer vacation season and highlight the role quality education, stable housing, jobs, health and justice play in creating community peace.

Typically, summer months see an increase in violent activity and crime among youth. The youth organizers (14–20 years old) believe that by bringing together the community in events such as these, building relationships between youth and among youth and adults, and providing alternative activities that meet the needs of our peers and help them better understand the way their behavior affects society and how society affects their behavior, we can shift the social norms among youth away from negative behaviors and toward positive community involvement.

Every day at Teen Empowerment, youth-some who have been incarcerated, are living in foster care, are struggling to raise their own children, are out of school with no diploma, whose lives have been violently disrupted by drugs, shootings, and even homicide in their families and neighborhoods-find our strengths and voices as we take on the challenging job of Teen Empowerment Youth Organizer.

We are proud to count you as a partner in our efforts.

Self-Development of People Committee (SDOP) Grants Awarded

Self-Development of People (SDOP) is not a “normal” presbytery committee in that it relates directly to the national church office for its funding and mission. A portion of the One Great Hour of Sharing offering is given to the national level of SDOP, which is then allocated to the presbytery-level committees.

The Presbytery of Genesee Valley awarded the following grants to organizations that fit the definition of a “Self-Development” group.

  1. The Community for Social Justice (Rural and Migrant Ministry); $5,000 for educational work.
  2. Unity NE Surveillance Pilot Project; $1,030 for starting a “Neighborhood Watch” style project.
  3. Remington Super Urban Project Porch Security Pilot Project; $525 for starting a “Neighborhood Watch” style project.
  4. Eastern Service Workers Association; $2,500 for expanding its community organizing work.
  5. NEAD CDF Freedom School; $5,000 for mentoring and entrepreneurship of inner-city residents.

Here are other recent SDOP Grant Recipients-rev 3-2015