Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2003, $198,700)
This grant will support the partnership between the City of Alexandria Juvenile Court Service Unit and the Alexandria Seaport Foundation's boat building apprenticeship program and junior apprenticeship toy boat entrepreneurial program. This partnership has been providing adjudicated youth in Alexandria with vocational services since 1993. The boat building apprenticeship program provides youths referred by the City's Court Service Unit with a stipend job in a wooden boat shop. During the school day, the program focuses on youths who are on parole, have dropped out of school or have been expelled. After school, the program works with youths deemed most likely to drop out or get into more trouble. The youths work under the supervision of a professional boat builder and alongside adult volunteers. During the apprenticeship, outside services are coordinated and supported for youths. These range from G.E.D. programs to Drivers Education. Upon completion of the apprenticeship, the youths are provided with the scholarships necessary for them to continue in school or start a career path job.
The junior apprenticeship program trains 20 middle school-aged youth on Friday and Saturday afternoon/evenings (4:00-8:00 pm) during the summer months to sell, at cost, model toy sail boats to tourist and local children alike. Junior apprentices work as 'master boat builders', design consultants, cashiers, salesmen and water-safety officers. During the 8-week programs, junior apprentices gain skills needed to succeed in regular employment. Rather than earning a stipend, junior apprentices earn passes that promote the productive use of leisure time in the community (i.e. movie and pool passes, go-cart and miniature golf passes, bus tokens and tickets to the bowling alley).
This grant will fund 42 apprentices and 20 junior apprentices over eighteen months. Using past statistics, it is anticipated that 65 percent of these apprentices will succeed. Success is defined for regular apprentices as being in school or holding skilled employment one year after they leave the program and for junior apprentices as completing the eight-week entrepreneurial employment and training program.