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The Ocala Police Department kicks off third Phoenix Rising Project.
On March 19, 2012 the Ocala Police Department will host the “wall raising” for the Phoenix Rising Project. The Ceremony will be at the site location, 1702 NW 19th Street, and begins at 9:30 AM.
The Ocala Police Department kicks off third Phoenix Rising Project.
On March 19, 2012 the Ocala Police Department will host the “wall raising” for the Phoenix Rising Project. The Ceremony will be at the site location, 1702 NW 19th Street, and begins at 9:30 AM.
Project founder former Ocala Police Chief Samuel Williams started the first Phoenix Rising Project in February 2011. The first Phoenix Rising Project was very successful, with over half of the participants finding employment.
The 16-week program provides low-income young adults ages 18-21 the opportunity to work toward their GEDs or high school diplomas, and learn job and life skills that will prepare them for employment or college. It also will serve the community by providing affordable housing.
The program’s goal is to provide the participants with a sense of accomplishment, instill the importance of learning job skills, as well as experience the reward of helping others.
The program is modeled after “Youth Build,” which is funded through grants from the Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration. The grants are awarded on a competitive basis and city officials are hoping that a successful community-based initial effort will open doors for federal funding for subsequent projects.
This project will accommodate 16 participants, 13 males and 3 females. The ages of the group range from 18 to 21.
A number of public, private and service agencies have stepped forward to make this program possible.






Following are a group of participating agencies and the role they play:
- Special Thanks to Gator Joes, 12431 SE 135th Ave Ocklawaha, FL, for contributing $30,000.00 to help fund the project.
- Department of Housing and Urban Development - Community Development Block Grant through Marion County providing funding for the youth development training.
- City of Ocala –providing services through their building department and waiving fees
- Ocala Police Department – Coordinating the project and providing crime prevention dollars
- Habitat for Humanity of Marion County – Providing building services and family for home
- Workforce Connection of Citrus, Levy, and Marion – funding to pay for the instructors and participant stipends approximately $120,000
- Henkels & McCoy –the youth service provider for Workforce Connection
- Veolia Environmental – Providing dumpster and related services
- Zion United Methodist Church – classroom facilities
- Focus on Leadership – Mentoring services
Anyone interested in donating resources for future projects can contact Laurie Whitaker at 352-369-7000

Note to Editors:
The March 19th event will include the traditional “wall raising,” and remarks from dignitaries. This event will take place at the site location, 1702 NW 19th Street, and begins at 9:30 AM.
Photos:
Photo opportunities will include the young adults “swinging a hammer,” a rendition of the finished house and the wall raising. We also can make available the students in a classroom setting.
Interviews:
In addition to the main story line, we will make available participants who can talk about what the training program will mean to them.


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