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The California Gold Rush of 1849 provides the historic claim to fame for the towns of Georgetown, Cool, Garden Valley, Kelsey, Greenwood, Pilot Hill, and Volcanoville that are spread across the craggy hills above the middle and south forks of the American River. But this cluster of former mining towns known as the Georgetown Divide is working to launch a reputation of another kind. They want to be known as one of the best places to raise healthy, successful and connected children.Changemaker_Action_Georgetown_Divide

100BEST_160The impact of five years of youth development in Georgetown Divide, CA cannot be overstated. In 2007, Georgetown Divide thought the initiative had reached a critical mass as it saw the widespread use of its practices. However, it was only just getting started. There is a cohesiveness and spirit of community that comes through in crisis and celebration.

The people of The Georgetown Divide show their care and compassion for young people through the efforts of numerous community groups and school-based programs. Counseling is available to students through a partnership with New Morning Youth and Family Services. Throughout the school district, classrooms are implementing teaching strategies that meet the learning needs of all students. The Mentors Plus program, offered at one K-8 school and for freshman transitioning to high school, includes model pregnancy prevention curriculum in support groups as well as providing mentors. The Health Educators who deliver this curriculum have been trained in the Youth Development Institute, and the process for curriculum delivery has been carefully designed to incorporate youth development principles. Read On…

Earlier this year, I posted a blog “Can’t See the Forest for the Fields” in which I talked about the arbitrary (for youth) but systemic (for our schools, communities, and organizations) distinction between the notion of “student” and that of “youth”. I also talked about the gap that we create when a young person is a student say from 7 a.m.-2:00 p.m. while in school and then suddenly becomes a youth when he exits the school building and enters the community. Click me for the entire blog posting…

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Ready by 21: Making Quality Count




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