Southwest Partnership

Education and Workforce Development Committee

Thursday March 3rd


1 N. Poppleton St


Jerrell Bratcher

Yusuf Shabazz

Vernell Lewis

Lou Packett

Jordan Packett

Lisa Rawlings

Elizabeth Weber


Small Grants Fund for Schools Update

In December donations totaling $6000 allowed the Education and Workforce Development Committee to establish the Small Grants Fund for Schools. This Fund is for afterschool programs and enrichment activities in Southwest Partnership area schools. The application process is very easy and the only reporting requirements are a brief write up of the activity or project and some pictures that the SWP can share.


As of March five grants have been made to four schools:

George Washington Elementary School: Attendance Initiatives

George Washington Elementary School: School Store Supplies

Southwest Baltimore Charter School: Garden Club Supplies

Vivien T Thomas Medical Arts Academy: Community Health Fair

Excel Academy: School Garden Supplies


The Committee also partnered with the James McHenry Robotics Team to apply for a grant for food and transportation to tournaments, providing support in writing the grant and being the non-profit organization applying. If a school program or project is in need of funding beyond what is available in the Small Grant Fund, the Southwest Partnership will help in looking for funding, being the non-profit organization applying if needed, and writing grants.


Program Updates


Summer Enrichment Program

The Summer Enrichment Program was developed as a part of the Committee’s goal of increasing access to enriching out of school time programs. As the SWP doesn’t have the capacity to have its own summer program, it has partnered with existing summer programs in the area that do not have the capacity to offer engaging academic enrichment: The Christian Community Center, the Franklin Square Salvation Army Boys and Girls Club, and Steuart Hill Academic Academy.


The SWP has connected these programs with high quality enrichment providers referred by the Maryland Out of School Time Network who would meet the needs and schedules of the summer programs. The SWP has applied for a grant to fund the program.


The goal of the program is to reduce summer learning loss, and approximately 250 children will be served.


Lou has spoken with Van Brooks and Mr Peters at Vivien T Thomas Medical Arts Academy, and both are interested in having YouthWorkers over the summer. Lou knows some people who would be interested in coordinating the program, and asked if it would be a fit for the Southwest Partnership summer Youthworks program. Lisa and Elizabeth will check with Bill Joyner to see if they could be incorporated in the program.


Jerrell Bratcher knows of a program with funding, staff, and programming which is looking for more sites. He’ll connect them with Elizabeth.


Southwest Partnership Youthworks Program

The Southwest Partnership and the UMB Office of Community Engagement are partnering on a Youthworks program this summer which will provide 14 young people from the community with concrete professional skills as they work on a project identified as a need by each Southwest Partnership neighborhood association. The Youthworkers will have an opportunity to earn digital badges.


CUPS/Hollins Creative Placemakers Youthworks Program

CUPs Coffeehouse and the Hollins Creative Placemakers are developing a Youthworks program based off of one that was held last year. It will serve up to 50 students and will be based on a rotating cohort model: students will be split into groups and rotate between work placement, community projects, and enrichment and life skills each week. The SWP Education and Workforce Development Committee is partnering with the program.


Attendance, Literacy, and Mental Health

Attendance-Public Allies project is moving forward. Jerrell suggested contacting Child Health Prevention and Social Emotional Foundations for Early Learning at UMB for resources and ideas.


Southwest Wheels

Jane Buccheri, one of the Committee members, approached Lisa after the last meeting with information about the ASCEND grant which is money from Morgan for health related community-based participatory research. She suggested that James McHenry might have projects that would be a good fit.


The school, through the community school planning committee, said that they were interested in establishing a bike club–there had been a real need expressed by the families of students for after school activities that provided fitness and hands-on STEM activities.


We are working on a letter of interest that describes the program and are looking for additional partners in the neighborhoods and in bike programs across the city.


Jerrell suggested the Health Department (Ashley Day) and Underarmor (Amy Larkin) would both be interested in contributing to the program. He also offered to recruit faculty partners.


Next Steps

The latest numbers from the schools indicate that very few students in the area are scoring proficient in reading or math. Franklin Square had the best results.


The Committee decided to move ahead with finding resources for meeting afterschool needs for the 2016-2017 school year. An assessment needs to be done of what those needs are. Interviews will be held at area schools to determine what afterschool programs they offer, how many students they serve and their grades, and what the biggest needs are.

The interviewers are:

Vernell – James McHenry

Lou – Franklin Square

Joseph – Steuart Hill

Elizabeth – George Washington, Charles Carroll Barrister and Southwest Baltimore Charter

Lisa – Vivien T. Thomas Medical Arts Academy

Lisa & Elizabeth – Excel Academy at Francis M. Wood Academy


After the interviews the Southwest Partnership will look for established after school providers who meet the expressed needs of the schools and schedule interviews of the committee, members of the community and the neighborhood associations, the schools, and families of students so they can learn about the programs and determine which would be the best fit. The SWP will then fundraise for the resources to bring in the programs.



Ms Vernell reported that James McHenry is in need of technology support. UMB has surplus technology, but will need to work with the school to make sure that there are resources to maintain and utilize them fully.


The SAFE Center and Pigtown Food for Thought have a call for volunteers for restoration of the Poppleton Hoop House on March 12th at 9am.


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