Volunteers for Youth add new youth-serving program
Mark Friedel Staff Writer
Rogers County Volunteers for Youth will launch a new youth-serving program, U-Turn Academy, Monday at the Claremore Community Center.
U-Turn Academy volunteers provide an academic setting with wraparound services for youth (ages 10-17) who are on long-term school suspension from any school in the county.
Students who have been suspended for 10 days or more may attend the academy where they will receive assistance from a certified teacher, support from a para-professional and positive influence from the presence of a law enforcement officer.
Participants are in a supervised environment where they stay current on their school work through individual or group counseling and mentoring services. Other components include family activities and community service projects. U-Turn Academy Director will be former Claremore Public Schools administrator John Killebrew.
“We are so pleased to welcome Mr. Killebrew to our staff. He is ideally suited for this role,” said Volunteers for Youth Executive Director Melynda Stone. “Our most sincere hope is that this program will further help to reduce delinquency among 10 to 17-year-olds in Rogers County.”
Killebrew said he is excited about the opportunity to “remain an active part of the educational process for students who need a guide down a better path.”
“It is our hope through partnerships with the City of Claremore and Rogers County schools, that we will blaze the path for similar programs state-wide,” he said.
U-Turn Academy is funded through a juvenile deliquency program grant from the Oklahoma Governor’s State Advisory Group on Juvenile Justice and Deliquency Prevention. The project is also administered through the Oklahoma Office of Juvenile Affairs.
Volunteers for Youth is a Rogers County United Way member agency and is supported by individual contributions, grants and fundraisers. Staff provides services for Rogers County youth in the areas of mentoring, safe and structured activities, healthy starts, skill building and service opportunities.
For more information, call Volunteers for Youth at (918) 343-2530.