- $3.6 million to invest in strategic planning and community development in Liberty City ""
(BLACK PR WIRE) (August 19, 2009) The Miami Children’s Initiative, previously known as the Magic City Children’s Zone, continues to seek the participation of residents of the Liberty City community in the development of a strategic plan that will help empower children and families through solid educational, social and economic environments.
Created by the State Legislature in 2008, the Miami Children’s Initiative is supported by an allocation of $3.6 million dollars that will be used for the initial planning of this 10 year project. Legislators tapped the Ounce of Prevention Fund of Florida to serve as the fiscal agent and evaluate the effectiveness of the initiative.
“It is our intent to help move the process forward by supporting Miami-Dade county, the community planning team and the Liberty City residents toward their goal to build this organization from the ground up into a viable service continuum for the Liberty City community,” says Winifred Heggins, MSW, Vice President at the Ounce. “We know how successful the Harlem Children’s Zone has been and in following them we look forward to seeing similar successes in Liberty City in the years to come.”
With support from the Ounce, Miami-Dade County has begun the process of seeking the designation for the Miami Children’s Initiative. As the State appointed governing body for this initiative, Miami-Dade County government has already adopted a resolution in support of these efforts established a planning team and is well on its way to developing a strategic community plan.
MIAMI CHILDREN’S INITIATIVE
The planning team consisting of residents from the Liberty City community, and representatives from state and local organizations are holding meetings throughout the Liberty City area to develop objectives and identify strategies in the areas of early development and care of children, education of children and youth, health and wellness, youth support, parent and guardian support, adult education, training and jobs, community safety and housing, faith-based initiatives and community development.
The public’s involvement in this process is critical to the initiative’s overall success. Following the development of a strategic plan, the county will establish the not-for-profit corporation that will guide the Miami Children’s Initiative into the future. Once the county completes this process, the Miami Children’s Initiative could administratively be housed within the Department of Children and Family Services and supported with fiscal management, technical assistance and evaluation provided by The Ounce of Prevention Fund.
“The county is eager to move forward with this initiative to improve coordination of community resources and empower our children and families to succeed. We look forward to continuing to receive the input from the Liberty City community as we structure the framework for this initiative and develop “one shared vision” that will afford all our children the opportunity to reach their fullest potential” says Miami-Dade Commissioner Audrey M. Edmonson. Irene Taylor-Wooten, Special Assistant for Social Services with Miami-Dade County encourages all interested parties to come out and be involved in the planning dialogue and implementation process.
For more information and for the monthly meeting schedule for the Miami Children’s Initiative, visit The Ounce of Prevention Fund at www.ounce.org.