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Federal grants fund AmeriCorps

Three education and training programs in Buffalo will get a boost from more than $2.8 million in federal grants from the Corporation for National and Community Service and the U.S. Department of Labor, according to Rep. Brian Higgins, D-Buffalo.

The grants will go to the Service Collaborative of WNY Inc., which will apply two of them to AmeriCorps programs and the other to a job training program for at-risk youth.

A $1,368,762 grant, which will be matched with local funds and in-kind donations, will be used for the AmeriCorps Builds Lives through Education (ABLE) program.

Under ABLE, 194 AmeriCorps members will work in schools and community organizations in Buffalo’s poorest neighborhoods to provide academic help to more than 3,000 students attending 14 city schools.

Another AmeriCorps fund grant of $412,685, matched with more than $350,000 in local funds and in-kind donations, will go to the Opportunity Corps program.

This funding will support 35 full-time AmeriCorps members who will provide financial literacy training and economic empowerment services to 12,500 people at 22 sites across the city.

The Service Collaborative also will receive $1.1 million for the Western New York YouthBuild Leaders Under Construction project, which trains youth for jobs in the construction industry.

The grant will provide instruction for 64 students over two years and help renovate two houses for low-income home buyers.

“These resources provide an opportunity to put additional people to work in areas of great need,” Higgins said. “Through partnerships with Buffalo schools, AmeriCorps members will be on the ground providing a helping hand to struggling students.”

“With this funding, we will give service opportunities to individuals from our region as well as from around the country which will transform lives,” said Kata Sarata, executive director of the Service Collaborative. “These individuals make a year-long commitment to serve daily in school, organizations and in the community.”


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