Rotarians looked on intently as Bernice Hancock, executive director with the Community Education Network, spoke of the passion she has for her job.
It seemed obvious most Rotarians knew something of the organization, that is now in its 26th year, but were also perhaps surprised at some of the information offered on Wednesday.
Hancock not only spoke of the organization’s roots as the Port au Port Community Education Network, aimed at reducing the school dropout rate on the Port au Port Peninsula (50 per cent at the time), but also the many partners the network now has.
She said their services basically run from “womb to tomb” and highlighted the diversity of programs, and how well they still all work together.
Through the Network and its associates, in any given year, they take in anywhere from $1.5 to $2 million and employ 25 to 30 individuals.
Hancock also used a portion of her address to talk about the transitional and supportive housing for youth in southwestern Newfoundland, which will be located in the former Youth Assessment Centre in Stephenville.
This initiative was originally announced in May of this year and will provide seven private bed sitting rooms with private washrooms. Six will be upstairs and a wheelchair-accessible one will be in the downstairs area of the facility.
Hancock said an engineer has been contracted to design and prepare new blueprints and a tendering package for the Community Education Network. Following that, there have to be approvals form Newfoundland and Labrador Housing Corporation, Services NL and the Town of Stephenville.
An opening of the supportive housing for youth is hoped to take place sometime between April and June of 2018.
Community Education Network partners:
- Community Youth Network
- Adult Basic Education
- Housing Stability Initiative
- Community Action Committee Healthy Baby Club
- Community Action Committee Family Resource Program
- Southwestern Coalition to End Violence
- Power Up! Employment Program
- Transitional and Supportive Housing for Youth
Source: Community Education Network