Today's meeting was held at the Victory Project at 409 Troy St.
Box lunches from Charlie’s Imports were featured for lunch.
· Barry Hall, president, opened the meeting, thanking everyone for coming out to learn about the Victory Project. He reminded those in attendance to make sure their dues are paid as well as to review their business information on file so that we have updated information for our website. Newly updated flyers were sent to businesses in the 45404 zip code to encourage new members to learn about and become active in GONDBA.
Flyers were passed out with information on Cops Appreciation Day to be held at AmVets Post 24 on Leo St. on Friday March 27th. Officers will be able to call ahead for carry-out orders as well as come in for food. Entertainment will be starting around 7pm and those who would like to join in are encouraged to bring instruments and jam out. The event is sponsored by GONDBA and AmVets Post 24
· Officer Grieshop reported crime stats. Violent crimes and burglaries have ticked up lately from last year. There have also been some thefts of vehicle batteries, but it is believed that the perpetrators have been caught. Property crime is down 16% from last year. All crimes are up 8% from last year, but down 21% from 2 years ago.
· Connie Nisonger from the City of Dayton spoke to the group about the mini-grant program. The application process for the new season will start in April. With help from Citywide, GONDBA was able to secure a $3500 grant to help with expenses for the National Night Out gathering held in August. Randy Chestnut asked anyone interested in helping plan the next NNO on August 4 to stay after the meeting or contact him at Hope Community Church.
Featured Speaker: Monnie Bush, president and CEO of The Victory Project
The Victory Project was started in 2007 and recently moved from 5th street into this building, formerly Thomas Graphics. A faith based organization, their goal is to provide a positive alternative for disengaged young men. Through their 3E’s curriculum they seek to show them a path towards a brighter future. From their website (www.victoryproject.org), the 3 E’s are:
We offer weekly, individualized homework assistance and tutoring. Our facility is equipped with a computer lab learning center and library.
We launched our own micro-enterprise; Victory Landscape Management, LLC. which our youth and business mentors operate. Gaining valuable job experience, while earning their way.
Our recreation space has a workout area & game room. It's also where we gather for dinner five nights a week. This consistency builds on a trusting, loving environment, which is reinforced during our weekly Bible studies.
The ages of the boys ranges from 12-18 with about 20 boys involved in the group. There is a waiting list at least as long. The boys have to come voluntarily and are held accountable through minimum GPA and attendance requirements. The group has reduced the recidivism rate by over 90% and has a graduation rate of 85%. Unemployment rate of those who’ve completed the program is only 8% compared to an average of 17% for teens in Ohio.
Through the Landscaping business, the kids learn management and labor skills that are directly applicable to the real world. The kids are rewarded with the work and ability to make money by adhering to the requirements of the program, such as coming into VP as required, attending school, doing well; the kids learn to accountable.
Aside from homework assistance and tutoring, the leaders provide help with IEP’s (school Individualized Education Programs) and life skills classes, learning how to interview, how to do household chores, how to act like a gentleman.
If you are interested in helping with the project, the group can always use volunteers for tutoring and mentoring, bringing in meals, assisting with facility or equipment maintenance, joining the board or simply donate. The group has chosen to rely on donations from individuals, businesses and foundations rather than pursue government funding. Contact The Victory Project at 937-224-0880 or at firstname.lastname@example.org
Barry closed the meeting, thanking everyone for their participation. Our next meeting will be held on March 25th. See you then!
Thanks for keeping our businesses strong! See you next month.
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