UR Action Team gives to URCC after school program

Once again the Upper Rogue Action Team has proven their work is all about kids as president of the organization, Bill Sisson, likes to say. The team came through for the Upper Rogue Community Center by giving $1,000 each to the Summer Camp and After School Homework Program, making it possible for the programs to continue in 2011. Lack of donations caused the summer camp to have a one-year hiatus this past summer, according to Tricia Hurley, Youth Director at URCC.

Wanting to help raise funds for the camp, the kids in the After School Program sponsored a talent show and dessert auction but that only brought in $600. It was not enough. A six-week camp costs about $3,000 to run and URCC counts on grants and donations from individuals. About 80 percent of kids in the two programs are from low-income families and need scholarships, said Hurley.

Adding to the dilemma, URCC had to raise the price for the camp to $25 a week. That was the first increase in over ten years and “we just did not have the donations,” explained Hurley. The camp opened and closed on the first day.

Discussing the After School Homework Program currently in session, Hurley said it is “going good actually.” Past executive director Steve Hauck had assured Hurley this year was covered. New director, David Abbott, said, “It is a little early to tell but I think it will be okay. We’ll be aggressive in obtaining funding.”

Abbott likes his new position and envisions an expansion of this program so kids to have a place to go after school. He has seen a definite need in the community for youth programs.

Stressing the need for grants, Hurley said both of the URCC youth programs get funding from groups such as the Cow Creek Umpqua Indian Foundation. However, if there is no community support grants may not be awarded as there is usually the requirement of matching funds.

Hurley expressed appreciation for Bill Sisson and the Upper Rogue Action Team and the support the group gives to youth in the community. The Shady Cove Open Golf Tournament held each summer at the Eagle Point Golf Course is the vehicle that supplies the team with money to make donations. 2010 was the most successful year ever, bringing in $24,000. “We were surprised because of the recession. It’s a neat thing,” said Sisson with enthusiasm.

This year the tournament was coordinated with the Boys & Girls Clubs from both Shady Cove and White City. Sisson attributes the success of the event to having more active volunteers and help from club director, Carrie Beebe. From tournament proceeds, the two clubs garnered $14,000.

As well as helping the clubs, 120 pairs of shoes were bought for needy kids. This year the team will also give much needed school and other supplies to Shady Cove School and the Boys & Girls Clubs. Although in previous years the proceeds purchased winter coats for children, this year another organization took on that project, said Sisson. He added the team will donate all funds to youth programs but $5,000— the amount needed for startup costs for the 2011 tournament.

These days, youth is the buzzword in Shady Cove. Organizations are admirably focusing on the needs of kids in the community and working together for the cause. After receiving the two $1,000 checks from Sisson, Abbott spoke his thoughts, “It takes a lot of effort and partnerships from the community and other organizations. That is how you get things done—leveraging each other’s resources for the benefit of the community.”

There are still spaces available in the after school program. For more information call Tricia Hurley at Elk Trail School at 541-830-6246.
By Margaret Bradburn
Of the Independent

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