Pasadena-based organizations Flintridge Center, Reading Partners, and Union Station Homeless Services are finalists in the 2020 My LA2050 Grants Challenge, a call for ideas to make L.A. the best place to learn, create, play, connect, and live. The community-guided initiative is open to public vote until Sunday, July 19 with up to $100,000 as the top grant award in each goal category.
Flintridge Center’s project seeks to make L.A. the best place to create through their Apprenticeship Preparation Program (APP), which prepares formerly incarcerated individuals for living wage careers in union construction trades. The APP is an evidence-based intervention that integrates workforce development with trauma-informed care to create life-changing opportunities for 100 individuals each year.
Reading Partners knows school closures due to COVID-19 will have a particularly significant impact on the low-income communities they serve, having studied the impact of summer slide, which by itself can create a learning loss for low-income students of two to four months. With anticipated school closures and time out of school for students in the fall, there will potentially be an even greater and lasting impact on many young students. Reading Partners’ LA2050 grant funds in the “learn” category would be devoted entirely to launching a brand-new virtual literacy intervention program for Pasadena elementary schools.
In the “connect” category, Union Station Homeless Services’ proposal responds to the isolation and loneliness reported by families and individuals served as they settle into their new homes. The program seeks to increase housing retention rates, improve community connection, and foster community integration of currently homeless families and individuals in bridge-housing and those that are formerly homeless in permanent supportive housing by providing social and recreational activities and pairing individuals with a supportive community volunteer ally.
Visit challenge.la2050.org/vote/form/ to learn more and cast your votes. Voting is open to all U.S. residents ages 14 and older.