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Miami Children's Initiative



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President Bill Clinton, former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, and Chelsea Clinton announced details for the eighth annual Clinton Global Initiative University (CGIU) meeting, which will bring together more than 1,000 college students from around the world on March 6-8 at the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Florida. Students will join innovators, thought-leaders, and civically-engaged celebrities to make a difference in CGIU's five focus areas: education; environment and climate change; peace and human rights; poverty alleviation; and public health.


On Sunday, March 8, President Clinton and Chelsea Clinton will host the Clinton Foundation Day of Action, a day of volunteering to give back to the community in partnership with the Miami Children's Initiative (MCI) in Liberty City. MCI is implementing a "cradle-to-college-to-career" strategy in Liberty City focused on intentionally investing in children and their families within a designated 29 MCI Logo block "Impact Zone."  CGIU students will work on neighborhood and school improvement projects ranging from urban agriculture to revitalizing basketball courts and painting murals. To learn more, visit cgiu.org  



Clinton Global Initiative Universtiy




MCI Tutoring Program:

bookstack image for Tutoring to Excellence logo

To achieve the goal of 100 percent of Liberty City's children graduating from college, MCI is partnering with ReSERVE to provide one-on-one or small group tutoring to children living within the Impact Zone who are not performing well in school. 



MCI, the American Culinary Legion and Chef Rene Eguiluz have partnered to launch the Culinary Apprenticeship Certification Students with Culinary Apprenticeship Certificated program. Through this program, 22 students work in a commercial kitchen in order to receive their Food Handler's Certification (FHC). The FHC is the first step toward gainful employment in a professional kitchen. Graduates also receive job search support such as resume writing, mock interviews and transportation to and from interviews.



fresh vegetablesIn an effort to provide Liberty City residents with fresh fruits and vegetables, Key Biscayne Chief of Police Charles Press, the Key Biscayne Community Foundation, Pat Molinari and the Coca-Cola Foundation have partnered with Fresh Food Co-op. Along with fresh fruits and vegetables, cooking and nutrition courses are also offered. Residents of Liberty City work hand-in-hand with Residents of Key Biscayne to source, transport and distribute the produce on a monthly basis to the participating families. By March of 2015, 100 families will be served twice a month.


Key Biscayne, as part of the Village of Empathy, has partnered with Liberty City as their sister-city. With this partnership we hope we can grow as a community that understands the rights and responsibilities of citizenship in order to create current and future leaders. We also hope to build and educate a population of youth that are empathetic and desire to make a positive impact on local, greater, and global communities. The Fresh Food Co-Op is one of many projects under this sister-city partnership.

Parramore Kidz Zone


Students and Staff Attending National Mentoring Summit

On January 28, Parramore Kidz Zone (PKZ) sent a team of youth and staff to Washington D.C. to attend the 2015 National Mentoring SummitExpanding the Mentoring Effect

The summit was held at the Renaissance Hotel in the heart of our nation's capital. The three day event is the only national forum that brings together practitioners, researchers, corporate partners, government and civic leaders, national youth-serving organizations and the network of affiliate mentoring partnerships to explore and advance mentoring's positive impact on individuals and communities.


The youth that attended the summit are employed by PKZ as counselors and coaches for the younger children in Parramore. Training like this ensures that our staff and youth employees have the skills needed to guide the next generation of Parramore children toward success.

Students Touring Capitol
The visit to Washington D.C. was an incredible opportunity for our staff and youth. U.S. Representative Corrine Brown graciously arranged a tour of the Capitol which is remembered as the highlight of the trip.


As a middle school student, DeMarcus Womack (D.W.) joined PKZ in 2006. By the time he was in high school, D.W. lost his mother and grandmother. With hard work and guidance from PKZ, D.W. graduated from high school and was accepted to college.


Below is an excerpt from his college essay:


"When you grow up in a neighborhood as poverty stricken as mine, the thing that motivates you is a flicker of flame that represents the light at the end of the tunnel. All your life you hear statistics on the number of people who make it "out" and the much bigger number who end up back in the neighborhood walking around unsuccessful and committing crimes on the block. My biggest fear is failure. I have seen it; witnessed it so many times just walking along the path to my high school; bums laying on park benches running up to kids of all ages asking for money; teenagers, pants sagging to the floor, jaws full of paraphernalia, trying to make a quick buck. There's no rule that says I have to be a product of my environment. By pursuing my education, I'm looking the statistics in the eye and disproving them. I am showing every young man behind me that there are other choices coming out of the neighborhood we come from. I am serious about my education and my desire, more than anything, is to make it to the top so that I am able to give back and be a positive role model. The way that I think about it, you are basically not only investing in my future, but the future of my community."

Gino Nicholas, Carlos Harrison, Cassie Fran, Jameel Reynolds, DeMarcus Womack, Ashton Bell, Eric Griffin
Gino Nicholas, Carlos Harrison, Cassie Fran, Jameel Reynolds, DeMarcus Womack, Ashton Bell, Eric Griffin

Unfortunately, after a semester away at college, D.W. returned to Parramore. He had been living on a friend's dorm room floor. He had accumulated a semester's worth of college loans only to learn that despite the loans, college was financially out or reach for him.


D.W. did not give up, and PKZ did not give up on him. He went Parramore Kidz Zone Logo back to a two-year college in 2012 that specializes in helping aspiring collegiate athletes get into D-1 colleges.


On February 4, D.W. signed a full- ride football scholarship to the University of Texas at El Paso. This summer, with his AA degree in hand, D.W. heads to El Paso to finish his college education. 

New Town Success Zone



The editorial, Partnerships are key to success in New Town was recently published in the Florida Time Union:

Seven years after its founding, the New Town Success Zone uses partnerships to rescue a struggling neighborhood.


Modeled after the Harlem Children's Zone in New York City, New Town began in 2007 with a specific mission - to pave a path to success for the children living within the 15 square blocks bounded by Kings Road, Myrtle Avenue, Beaver Street and CSX's Moncrief Yard.

At that time, one-third of the residents in New Town were unemployed, fewer than half of the 5,000 residents had high school diplomas and the area was plagued by violence. Students had soaring absence rates, missing an average of 12 days per nine-week period.


A hopeful blueprint for improving the area was created. But the recession hit - and funding became scarce.


So Success Zone founders enlisted many partners, such as Baptist Health, Edward Waters College and the Jacksonville Urban League. The changes have been immense, including a 40 percent decrease in crime and major reductions in student absences.


To read the rest of the editorial visit, http://jacksonville.com/opinion/editorials/2015-02-05/story/partnerships-are-key-success-new-town 

Habitat for Hummanity Jacksonville Logo Woman standing in front of new house  

To view the NTSZ Neighborhood Revitilization Initiative- Habitat for Humanity of Jacksonville, Inc. video, click here.



If you're born into a world of limitations because of poverty or financial illiteracy, then what are your chances for a future of greater possibilities?


Junior Achievement of North Florida knows the answer, and it's among the reasons we decided to open our first dedicated financial literacy center.


Furthermore, we will create this financial literacy center in one of Jacksonville's most economically depressed neighborhoods as part of the New Town Success Zone.


Our move into New Town begins with the renovation of the Mitchell Community Center, a project the city's Department of Parks and Recreation will oversee. The renovated facility will be home to the Bank of America/JA Financial Literacy Center.


The name recognizes Bank of America's support for the financial literacy center: a $200,000 grant that Junior Achievement recently received as the bank's 2014 Neighborhood Builders Award recipient. We committed the grant to the New Town center.


Scheduled to be fully operational by 2016, the financial literacy center will expose an estimated 2,500 second and third-graders a year from throughout Jacksonville to topics such as zoning, taxes, banking and personal money management.


Students from all Duval County elementary schools will have the opportunity to view New Town and learn about life from the New Town perspective. Program participants will also "open" their own restaurant, a virtual experience in running a business and learning how money flows through the economy.


We hope to keep them in Junior Achievement as their education progresses and provide financial literacy, workforce preparation and entrepreneurship programs to older students in the future.


We look forward to the Bank of America/JA Financial Literacy Center grand opening in New Town.

Junior Achievement Logo  

While it will mark a new and exciting initiative for Junior Achievement of North Florida, more importantly, the center more will open young minds to a world that's filled with possibilities.


Steve St. Amand, President

Junior Achievement of North Florida



New Town Success Zone Logo