SCF Awards Grants for 2015 MLK Community Service Projects

(Bradenton, Fla., December 19, 2014) —State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota (SCF) announced the grant recipients for community projects as part of the communitywide 2015 MLK Day of Service.

SCF received funding from the Florida Legislature to provide opportunities for Manatee and Sarasota counties' community organizations to complete service projects in Florida District 70 and participate in the nationwide effort to honor Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. with a day of community service on the federal holiday, Jan. 19, 2015.

The following organizations received the grants:

Alpha Phi Alpha Foundation of Manasota Inc. will provide middle and high school students from diverse backgrounds an opportunity to gain personal and educational enrichment by way of workshops, mentoring, and leadership development for boys and girls in grades 6 through 12.

Beauty Plus Network plans to have a "Caregivers Wellness Retreat" with the goal of providing respite services to caregivers. Services such as manicures, makeup, massages and hairstyling will be offered by licensed professionals.

Bethel Christian Methodist Episcopal Church will provide an educational workshop (Mental Health 1st Aid Training) to a select group of community members to help them identify members of our community who may have mental health issues.

Boys & Girls Clubs of Manatee County Inc.will honor the legacy of Dr. King by providing breakfast and giving away 300 backpacks filled with school supplies. Groups from local churches will provide workshops. There will also be youth recitals of Dr. King's speeches, and a youth basketball tournament.

Brotherhood of Men Mentor Group Inc., a well-established mentoring program in the Newtown community primarily serving at-risk black boys, will have a march, and provide bag lunches to citizens in the lower socio-economic areas of Sarasota County's (District 70). This project is a youth-led effort.

Daughtrey Elementary School will sponsor a three-phase event. Phase 1 will include taking 12 students and chaperones to Birmingham, Ala., to visit the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute and 16th Street Baptist Church. Phase 2 will be a fresh vegetable giveaway to the community, coupled with a cooking exhibition on how to make healthy meals from fresh vegetables. Phase 3 will include promoting the school's community garden as an ongoing resource for the community.

Diamondz in the Rough plans to have a community "Peace Rally" in Manatee County tobring together community organizations - including health departments, National Association for the Advancement of Colored People(NAACP), law enforcement agencies, businesses - to offer information, workshops, motivational speakers and entertainment in an effort to unite the community to find peaceful solutions to curb violence. This project is a youth-led effort.

Educational Consultants Consortium Inc.(ECCI) will start Manatee County's first S.T.E.M. community-based center, serving primarily at-risk students. The project will include a cleanup of the Anna E. Gayle Center, which will house the S.T.E.M. center, equipped withcomputers and a computer charging cart. In addition, ECCI plans to take a group of students to Florida Polytechnic University in Polk City.

Eternity Temple First Born Church Inc.and a host of community supporters will establish a community garden in an area considered a "fresh food desert" by Manatee County and the Manatee County Health Department.

Equality Early Childhood Literacywill give away 200 educational books to disadvantaged minority early learners in Manatee County.

Family Heritage House Inc.(FHH) plans to have an event to educate the community on the importance of preserving family and cultural history. FHH is planning a trip to Selma, Ala., to visit the sites where Dr. King came to national prominence.

Florida Studio Theatre(FST) will have a "spoken word project" with the goal of forging new bonds with community members using a multi-generation approach. FST plans to host workshops at Booker Middle School, day workshops, and discussions at the North Sarasota County Library. There also will be a final multi-generational performance presented to the community.

Genesis Health Services Inc. will provide free oral and medical screenings to 75 children and adults in the community, and also will provide shadowing opportunities for 10 S.T.E.M. students on the day of the event.

Manatee County NAACP will offer a forum for open dialogue between law enforcement, the public defender's office and the community.

Orange Ridge-Bullock Elementary School will take its fifth-grade class to Atlanta, Ga., where the students will visit the Ebenezer Baptist Church, the King Center, and the Children of Courage exhibit. The trip is scheduled two days before the holiday. The school also has coordinated with several community organizations to have a veteran's celebration at Manatee Veterans Monument Park near Manatee Memorial Hospital on MLK Day.

Ortygia Restaurant will feed 600 low-income people at their restaurant on Jan. 19.

Peace Education and Action Center Inc.will implement an art therapy program for low-income residents of the Newtown community.

Practical Home Economics / Health Literacy Projectwill help feed the homeless and disadvantaged in the Newtown community. The organization will also offer spiritual support, and information on healthy lifestyles.

Redeemed Christian Centerwill have a "Unity in the Community Resource and Wellness Rally" to offer free food, games, community-based resources, and give away backpacks and school supplies.

Sarasota-Bradenton Kappa Alpha Psi Project Guide Right Inc. plans to renovate its community house to ensure that local community organizations can meet and support their programs in a safe and comfortable environment. The project will be completed in phases that include renovating the community house bathroom, adding a fence and security system, and installing an air conditioner in the main meeting room. The last phase will include presentations by local students.

Sarasota MLK Celebration Committee will sponsor the 17th annual MLK Celebration, which will take place over several days starting Jan. 15. There will be a breakfast, educational panels and discussions, a celebration in Martin Luther King Jr. Park, a community service roundup, and family literacy circle.

Sarasota School of Arts and Sciences will start a school-based community garden to teach students how to grow efficient, nutritious and delicious food.

St. Paul Missionary Baptist Church will establish a free basic computer class and a series of workshops geared toward senior citizens. The church, which has partnered with local assisted living facilities, also plans to establish a computer lab that will be open to the community.

State College of Florida Diversity/Multicultural Awareness Committee will renovate the gardens, playground, and teen room at the Boys and Girls Club of Sarasota by bringing together diverse members of the community to support the effort.

Strength In Action Inc.will provide educational supplies to disadvantaged youth of Manatee County.

Turner Chapel A.M.E. Church will initiate an annual scholarship and mentoring program for students deemed at-risk who have been accepted into and are attending college. The church will have an award ceremony on Jan. 19.

Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Inc., in cooperation with the Five Pearls of Excellence Inc., will support the initiation of project "S.K.I.P.E.," a service-day project dedicated to the children of incarcerated parents. Workshops, an essay contest, door prizes and lunch will be offered Jan. 16, with more sessions and lunch tentatively scheduled for June 2015.

Page Edit