Archive for January, 2007

$$$$- MetLife Foundation Community-Police Partnership Awards

Thursday, January 18th, 2007

Announcing the sixth annual MetLife Foundation Community-Police Partnership Awards

 MetLife Foundation and the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) are partnering for the sixth year to recognize, sustain and share the work  of innovative partnerships between community groups and police  to promote neighborhood safety and revitalization.


Case studies about award-winning partnerships will be disseminated throughout the community development and law enforcement industries.

  Further information and a link to the full RFP is available at:


 Preliminary Application Deadline: February 23, 2007.

      Cash grants will be awarded in the following two categories:

  •  Neighborhood Revitalization Awards (Six at $10,000-25,000):  These awards celebrate excellence in collaboration between community organizations and police that yields crime reduction and economic development outcomes, such as new/renovated housing or commercial space that replaces a crime trouble spot.
  •  Special Strategy Awards (Five at $15,000): Community and police partners who have achieved significant accomplishments in one of the following areas will receive awards: 

      – Applied Technology to Improve Safety

      – Community Aesthetics and Beautification

      – Diversity Inclusion and Integration

      – Drug Market Disruption

      – Gang Prevention and Youth Safety

      – Reclaiming Public Places & Greenspaces

      – School Safety

      – Seniors & Safety

 Please note that MetLife Foundation and the Community Safety Initiative have  expanded the program since last year to include additional awards to a more diverse audience of community groups involved in public safety partnerships.  We encourage entries from applicants who have previously applied to our  RFP.  Please contact Mona Mangat at / 212.455.9357 if you have any questions.  Thank You and Good Luck!  

LISC is the nation’s leading nonprofit community development organization.  Established in 1980, LISC has marshaled more than $7.1 billion from 3,100 investors, lenders and donors.  In over 300 urban neighborhoods and rural communities nationwide, LISC has helped 2,800 organizations build or rehabilitate more than 196,000 affordable homes and almost 27 million square feet of retail, community and educational space – totaling $16.7 billion in development.  As a result, hundreds of thousands of people have better lives and brighter futures. 


Friday, January 12th, 2007


It’s time for MINI GRANTS again!

There are 14 more days to complete a very simple application. 

Application may be handwritten!  Please print clearly!  Here are some guidelines:

• Grants are for afterschool  programs licensed through NJDHS Office of Licensing ONLY
• Grants are for $2000
• All grant information must be filled out COMPLETELY.  Applications   missing ANY information will not be considered.  Please use the checklist  before submitting your application.
• Applications must be received no later than January 26, 2007 by 5:00 pm.
• Application Forms will not be mailed but will be available to download below.

Out of hundreds of applicants only 15 programs will be awarded a grant.

Remember that this is a highly competitive process.  You are competing with your peers.  Small mistakes could cause an application to be out of the running so, please double check your work.

Questions contact Jessica Heiberg @ 908.789.0259.

One last thing, the mini grant application must be in our possession at  NJSACC no later than 5pm on 1/26/07.  (NOT postmarked by that date but received by then).

Web Site For Young Latinas

Wednesday, January 10th, 2007


 Women’s eNews

Young Latinas Have Webzine to Call Their Own
Run Date: 12/26/06
By Suzanne Batchelor
Women’s eNews
Four years ago two journalism students in Austin, Texas, decided that young U.S. Latinas need a magazine to call their own. Today they produce a Webzine and run workshops that train girls and teens to report, edit and keep asking questions.

Alicia Rascon

AUSTIN, Texas (WOMENSENEWS)–Alicia Rascon and Laura Donnelly met as journalism students in a spring 2002 University of Texas-Austin class on Latino-Latina culture and the media.

Talking together, they knew what was missing: Latina teens and girls didn’t have a magazine that was really about them.

“We had a stack of about 20 teen magazines and looked at all the covers,” Rascon recalled. “There wasn’t a single Latina on the cover. We didn’t see Latina bylines.”

“Most media for girls is not necessarily for all girls,” added Donnelly, a native New Yorker of Cuban, Peruvian and Irish descent. “There were no youth-protagonists in films who were not like drug dealers, gang members. Even if you look at Jennifer Lopez, she’s only played a Hispanic once or twice, and that was to be a maid.”

Now, four years later, both women have graduated and are holding full-time jobs. On top of that they are also producing Latinitas, “Little Latinas,” the only online media by and for Latina teens and girls. It reaches readers throughout the United States and as far away as Australia and Peru.

Although 17 million Latinas live in the United States, teen magazines showcase mostly whites, say Rascon and Donnelly.

To the extent the magazines did cover Latinas, they found an emphasis on teen pregnancy and drop-out rates.

“I wanted something deeper on why this is an issue and how do we overcome it,” said Rascon. “When we decided the theme of the magazine, we decided it should be success-driven and empower the girls, highlight the positive things; how Latinas are being successful and accomplishing their goals.”
New Content Monthly

Latinitas is actually two magazines on one Web site: one for high school teens, the other for those age 14 and under. New content is posted monthly.

“I’ve gotten e-mail from the only Latina in her school in Australia,” said Rascon, a native of El Paso. “She said that kids were making fun of her and that we were the one place that made her feel great.”

Putting out the magazine is a community-wide effort in Austin, a metro area that is about 35 percent Hispanic.

Working with the city school system and local philanthropies, the two entrepreneurs run six regular weekly after-school workshops–one at a high school, one at an elementary school and four in middle schools–where adult volunteers act as coaches for reporting and editing, Web design and photography. Other schools also invite the group to run occasional workshops.
Michelle Ortiz

“By the end of 2006, we anticipate we’ll have served 1,000 girls through our direct programs,” said Rascon.

Because many lower-income girls lack Internet access at home, Donnelly and Rascon are seeking advertisers and sponsors to add a print edition by late 2007. They say many Latina teens in their workshops want a magazine to take home and share with friends.

Rascon works in marketing at the Austin Children’s Museum and Donnelly is a public relations freelancer. Neither has earned a penny from Latinitas, on which they each spend between 10 and 40 hours a week. Beginning in June 2007, both will begin receiving a stipend, Rascon said, but it won’t be enough to let them to quit their other jobs.

The project’s annual budget of $50,000–raised from local corporations, individuals, fundraisers and earned income–mainly covers equipment costs. IBM has donated some laptop computers, locally-headquartered computer maker Dell donated $2,000 and Austin Energy contributed $10,000.

The founders hope to some day offer compensation, if only $10 an article, to their young writers.
Class Project

The two women started Latinitas as a college class project, launching a first edition in spring 2003, which they and other student volunteers wrote. Computer science major Angie Ayala volunteered as Web manager, a position she still holds.

A health article on smoking, a first-person account of battling a negative body image by a self-described borderline bulimic and a review of a local Mexican American rock band appeared in the first issue. Next came a “day in the life of a college Latina,” by a first-generation college student.

After the first issue was launched without any publicity, a Nebraska elementary school teacher and a California college professor contacted Rascon and Donnelly, eager to share Latinitas with their students.

The founders then registered the site with search engines and began receiving e-mails from readers who said they were excited to find the magazine. They issued a round of press releases and Latinitas in August 2003 received its first news coverage, in the El Paso Times.

When the media class–along with free university Web-site hosting–ended, the class professor, Federico Subervi, donated $500 to purchase Web site hosting and domain names so Latinitas could continue.

Rascon and Donnelly continued the project as a nonprofit, volunteer effort while they completed college and worked other jobs.
Another Inspiration

Around that time they also had another inspiration: If they were serious about encouraging young Latinas, they should involve them in the editorial process. “Instead of being for Hispanic girls, we wanted it to be by and for them, to engage girls in developing media,” said Rascon.

That’s when they approached a Hispanic mother-daughter program sponsored by Austin’s Junior League, part of the national organization that began in 1901 in New York City, when wealthy women raised money to aid Lower East Side immigrants. The Austin chapter knew that Hispanic girls were attending college at lower rates than non-Hispanics and wanted to support activities that would change that.

At that first workshop, Donnelly and Rascon assigned the girls to write newsletters about themselves and then had middle-schoolers interview those in high school about how they were preparing for college. “We collected that work and published a lot of it,” said Donnelly.

“They were echoing a lot of the same concerns we had,” Rascon said. “All the girls on the teen magazine covers had straight, blond hair, blue eyes, and they knew they did not fit that mold. It really affirmed I wasn’t the only one feeling this.”

The pair began thinking about how to create a structure for engaging girls and teens in the production process. The Austin school district welcomed their offer to create a weekly after-school program for middle-school girls, who would learn about writing for the magazine along with Web design and photography.

“I’m 35 and Alicia is 27,” said Donnelly. “I work with the girls but we still don’t really know what their teen issues are. The nonprofit program allows us to get direct feedback from girls.”

Latinitas still operates without a physical newsroom. Workshop students as well as readers around the country submit by e-mail to teen editors in workshops who mull over submissions. All the material then goes by e-mail to three-year volunteer managing editor Sandie Taylor, who works out of her home to ready it for publication.

Krystella Rangel, 16, last spring saw Latinitas publish her diary about her struggle to quit smoking. Recently, she wrote about her strategies for getting good grades. Among them: “Dodge class distractions” and “Ask questions without hesitation.”


Go To:


Suzanne Batchelor is a Texas-based independent journalist.

Hip-Hop Club Open House and Dinner Forum

Tuesday, January 9th, 2007


 Join the Partnership for After School Education and

the 21st Century Community Center in Hoboken for a:


Hip-Hop Club Open House and Dinner Forum

Thursday, January 18th, 2007


Hosted by the

Learning Lab at the Demarest School

4th and Garden Streets

Hoboken , NJ


From 4:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.


In this multi-part afternoon/evening session, PASE invites you to observe the Hip-Hop Club at the Hoboken Learning Lab, an afterschool class for Middle School students led by Safahri Ra, Hip-Hop teaching artist and Founding Director of Pangea, a leading New York-based Hip-Hop education company.  After the class, join Safahri in a hands-on seminar, where he will help you prepare to begin your own Hip-Hop club at your afterschool site – including a booklet with lesson plans and a CD with Hip-Hop backbeats your students will want to work with.  Don’t miss this opportunity to bring something really exciting back to your site this year.


Please note:

This is a FREE program and OPEN to ALL afterschool program directors and staff from programs in New Jersey

SPACE IS LIMITED!!  Please reserve your place with Kim Wiley-Schwartz, NJ Initiative Coordinator and Learning Lab Director via email at  or call her cell phone at 646-734-6486


You are welcome to attend any part of the Open House and Forum – just let  us know when you would like to come.


A light dinner will be provided.


Training on how to Maximize Middle School Homework Help

Monday, January 8th, 2007


Registration open till January 22nd ! Do not be closed out!


Maximizing Middle School Homework Help and Working with Schools and Parents as Partners – Getting Beyond “I don’t have any homework”

The second  session of 6  is in partnership with PASE of NYC.
When: Friday, January 26th,2007
Where:First Baptist Church of Westfield,
           170 Elm Street
           Westfield, NJ

Cost: $30 per person
What: Covers materials, and lunch
Training Hours: 5 hours of NJ DOE Professional Development
SESSION # 2. Maximizing Middle School Homework Help and Working with Schools and Parents as Partners – Getting Beyond “I don’t have any homework
During this intensive workshop, professionals will work with Nicole Rodriguez Leach to examine their Middle School site’s homework session and strengthen their programming during that tricky hour.  We will explore how to use the homework help time as a skill building opportunity, engage Middle School youth in their homework, share challenges and best practices and develop an action plan to take back to your sites to implement.  The second half of the workshop, Ms. Rodriguez Leach will discuss CBO/school partnership and how to work with teachers to maximize your homework time as well as using parents as partners in this venture.

Ms. Nicole Rodriguez Leach graduated from Wesleyan University in 1997 and Packer Collegiate Institute in 1993.  Nicole has experience working with various education non-profits including East Harlem Tutorial Program, Summerbridge, Partnership for After School Education (PASE) and Henry Street Settlement as both a program manager and consultant.  Nicole is fluent in Spanish and presently works for the Teak Fellowship as Director of Admissions.  She is also the mother of three children under five.
REGISTRATION FORM****************************************
Session 2:
Maximizing Middle School Homework Help and Working with Schools and Parents as Partners – Getting Beyond “I don’t have any homework

(A form is needed for each person registering – Duplicate as needed)
City State ZIP
Day Phone:
After school Program:
Number of youth served:
Dietary Needs:
Cost: $30 per person
Make checks payable to NJSACC.
PO’s and Credit Cards accepted.
Amount enclosed: ________________
Check Number__________ or Purchase Order Number____________
Credit Card #_____________________________________________
Visa___ MasterCard___ Expiration Date____________
Name on Card____________________________________________
Zip Code for Credit Card Billing Address_______________
Mail payment and registration form to:
231 North Avenue West #363
Westfield, NJ 07090
Registrations may be faxed to 908-789-4237.
All Registrations must be received by January 22nd, 2007.
Payment must be mailed to the address above and received by date of training.