7/28/14: Summertime Opportunities Abound with Operation Primetime

Modified: January 23, 2015 4:04pm

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Funds Awarded to 44 Not-For-Profit Agencies Providing Summer Youth Anti-Crime and Enrichment Programs

ERIE COUNTY, NY— Today, Erie County Executive Mark C. Poloncarz was joined by Erie County Legislature Minority Leader Betty Jean Grant (D-Buffalo), Executive Director of the Metro CDC Delavan-Grider Community Center Candace Moppins, community leaders, and enthusiastic children at the Community Center to take part in a summer full of recreational fun and learning that is underway with the return of “Summer Primetime” grants. 44 local not-for-profit agencies have received some level of grant funding for their summer programs, with the amount of recipients’ grants ranging from $1,788 - $10,000. These grants provide for an adult-supervised environment for the ten-week school summer recess period and assist receiving agencies in creating & staffing structured recreational activities that prevent delinquency, increase socialization, and foster respect for authority.

“Operation Primetime takes advantage of the summer recess to get children involved with their communities, enjoy structured activities, and take part in recreational opportunities with peers in a safe and supervised environment,” said Poloncarz. “These grants provide kids all around Erie County with healthy activities in the time that they are away from school, giving them a chance to learn and socialize while still having fun. Summer time is fun time, and thanks to Operation Primetime the summer fun that we are seeing today at the Delavan-Grider Community Center is also happening in other communities around our area.”

Primetime programs primarily serve youth in need, and offer positive development opportunities, access to safe places for summer programs, and a wide range of activities including arts, community service, recreation, and field trips  that are offered by the various program participants. Programs also include educational components. While many of the recipient programs are located in the City of Buffalo, there are others in the City of Lackawanna, the Towns of Tonawanda, Orchard Park, Eden, Holland, and East Aurora, and elsewhere.

Legislature Minority Leader Betty Jean Grant said, “These programs funded by Operation Primetime provide youths who want to stay on the right track with purpose and structure, as well as the proper supervision.  I appreciate that some of these programs will also serve the youths and residents of District 2, which I represent, and who are hard-working, honest people fighting to achieve the American Dream. I am glad that County Executive Poloncarz and the County Legislature worked together to provide this vital funding.”

“We are grateful to Erie County for its Operation Prime Time program, which allows us to provide this vital program. Summer youth programs are critical to youth development. This investment in our youth will pay dividends in the future as the children we serve today become successful adults in the future,” added Candace Moppins, Executive Director of the Metro CDC Delavan Grider Community Center.

Deputy Commissioner of Erie County Youth Services Gary Damon, Jr. said, “I want to thank the volunteer members of the Erie County Youth Board for their hard work reviewing and scoring proposals, and visiting agencies. Due to their hard work, the agencies that provide the best outcomes are getting the resources they need to provide programming for our youth. The children served by these programs are spending their summer participating in enriching, high quality activities.”

Programs receiving funding are asked to operate from 12pm – 7pm, Monday through Saturday. Prioritized program areas, designed for youths ages 6-18, include academic enrichment; cultural enrichment (arts, music, science); career enrichment; youth leadership, community service and civic engagement; and gang and violence prevention. Supervised recreation may serve as a part of a program but cannot be a program by itself.

Agencies receiving Operation Primetime funding in 2014 include: Access of WNY; Be-A-Friend Program (Big Brothers Big Sisters); Blossom Garden Friends School; Boys & Girls Clubs of Buffalo, Holland, East Aurora, Eden, Orchard Park, and the Northtowns; Buffalo Urban League; Canisius College; Child & Adolescent Treatment Services; Child & Adolescent Treatment Services (Detention); City of Lackawanna; Community Action Organization; Cradle Beach Camp; Elim Community Corp.; Erie Regional Housing Dev. Corp.; Firsthand Learning (Detention); Girl Scouts of WNY; Greater Niagara Frontier Council, Boy Scouts of America; Jericho Road Ministries; King Urban Life Center; Lackawanna Yemen Soccer Club (Lackawanna Sports & Education); Love Alive Fellowship Full Gospel Baptist Church; Westside Community Center; Metro CDC Delavan-Grider Community Center; Heritage Centers Erie County (Detention); North Buffalo Community Development Corporation; Northwest Buffalo Community Center; Peace of the City Ministries; Lt. Col. Matt Urban Center; Seneca Babcock Community Association; Seneca Street Community Development Corp.; the Concerned Ecumenical Ministry to the Upper West Side of Buffalo NY; UB Center for Urban Studies; UB Liberty Partnership; Town of Tonawanda Recreation; Willie Hutch Jones Sports & Education; Willie Hutch Jones Sports (Detention); Gloria J. Parks Community Center; Valley Community Association; XCEL; and Young Audiences of WNY. Total funding for the program is $411,084.