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First cohort of grads from Comprehensive Reentry Services program honored at Euclid Jail

Last night, Cuyahoga County Executive Armond Budish joined Cuyahoga County Corrections to congratulate the first cohort of graduates of the Comprehensive Reentry Services program. Students have completed more than 165 hours of classroom and hands-on training over the past nine weeks. They learned baseline kitchen, safety, preparation and cooking skills and earned a three-year Servsafe Food Handler certification through the National Restaurant Association.
 
“Too often, individuals who have paid their debt to society confront many obstacles to good jobs and quality education and training”, said County Executive Budish in a statement.
 
“It's exciting to see the progress of these individuals and the culinary program”, added Ken Mills, Cuyahoga County Director of Regional Corrections.  
 
The voluntary program fosters pre- and post-release employment and job readiness for male adult individuals serving court sentences with the County jail and housed at the Euclid facility. 
 
Euclid service providers are Towards Employment, Recovery Resources and Project Learn. Services to be provided pre-release at the Euclid facility include: employment assessment, individual success plan, career exploration, job readiness skills training, ABLE/GED classes, behavioral health/substance abuse counseling services, Thinking for a Change workshops, and culinary arts training.
 
To be eligible, inmates must be convicted as an adult and imprisoned under the municipal, county, Federal, or state law but have not been convicted of a sexual offense other than prostitution; and have enough time remaining on the sentence to complete the program.
 
Post release, previous offenders will continue to receive ongoing services as well as additional supportive services to help them successfully reenter the community and find employment.
 
“Their accomplishments demonstrate the potential impact of innovative and collaborative programming,” said Mills of the graduates and program.
 
Partly funded from the U.S. Department of Labor grant; Comprehensive Reentry Services is a collaborative partnership that includes Cuyahoga County Corrections, OhioMeansJobs|Cleveland-Cuyahoga County, and Cuyahoga County Office of Reentry and Edwin’s Leadership and Institute.
 

Brandon Chrostowski named CNN Hero

Local hero Brandon Chrostowski got some national recognition this week. Per CNN:

"Foodies savor the French cuisine at Edwins, an upscale restaurant that's earned a reputation as one of Cleveland's finest eateries. But this high-end establishment provides far more than a good meal. It's staffed almost entirely by people who were once incarcerated.

By day, ex-offenders learn the fundamentals of the culinary arts industry. By night, they put their skills to work."

Get the whole story here.

Vibrant City Awards attract sold-out crowd, celebrate urban champions

On Tuesday, over 500 guests gathered at the Victory Center in the Health-Tech Corridor for the first-ever Vibrant City awards, hosted by Cleveland Neighborhood Progress.

CNP President Joel Ratner told the crowd, “The facts are there. Data shows that our region is gaining brains and income, our city schools are making terrific improvements, and Cleveland’s population loss is ending. We are headed into an era of exciting growth.”

City of Cleveland Community Development Director Daryl Rush was honored with the inaugural Morton L.Mandel Leadership in Community Development Award.

Other recipients were:

CDC Catalytic Project/Program Award
Fairfax Renaissance Development -- Intergenerational housing

Urban Realtor Award
Keith Brown and Dave Sharkey – Progressive Urban Real Estate

Developer Award
Keith Sutton and Dave Territo, Sutton Builders

Neighborhood Branding & Marketing Award
Downtown Cleveland Alliance – You and Downtown Video

Community Collaboration Award
Gordon Square Arts District (DSCDO, NWT, CPT)

Corporate Partner Award
Third Federal Saving

slavic village announces return of 'rooms to let: cle'

Rooms to Let: Cleveland is returning to Slavic Village on Saturday, May 16th and Sunday, May 17th this year. 

"Artists will create a temporary art exhibition using vacant homes as their medium," the website states. "The event, free and open to the public, will also include a neighborhood block party with live music, hands-on art activities and local food."

"Led by Slavic Village Development, Rooms to Let: Cleveland seeks to continue the conversation around vacancy and the plight of Cleveland’s historic neighborhoods in the wake of the foreclosure crisis. This year’s event will expand this dialogue to a new group of visual and performance artists to further interpret the evolution of community and recovery."

Click here for more information on how to donate to the project and how to apply to become a Rooms to Let artist. 

must-read politico story critiques greater university circle initiative

"Today, though, University Circle’s boosters describe a community where felons are getting jobs, hospitals are hiring from the neighborhoods, dilapidated houses are being refurbished and banks are making loans to collectives of the previously unemployed," writes Keith Epstein in this illuminating Politico story. "A 'health technology corridor has given birth to 170 startups, many located in new office space on brownfields cleansed of contamination. 'Uptown' is hot: A new retail and residential real estate development bustles with students, their parents, doctors, and people from the nearby neighborhoods who dine, shop and attend concerts before walking back to their homes."

"The Cleveland program, now entering its 10th year, expands on preexisting models—from recent initiatives in West Philadelphia to a priest’s campaign to empower Basque workers after the Spanish Civil War. It has been in place long enough that it has seen its share of successes and experienced invaluable setbacks that have forced a rethinking of approaches when economic realities didn’t align with the vision. Buffalo, Atlanta, Amarillo and at least a dozen other cities are closely monitoring the program."

Read the full story here.

city club ceo asks: can cleveland overcome its race problem?

"As chief executive of the City Club of Cleveland—a 102-year-old institution created to foster dialogue about local, national and international issues—I often find myself in the midst of conversations about the city. So when I—a white guy—am in a meeting about policing or witnessing the inability of some white people here to understand why Tamir’s death catalyzed such vocal and visible protests, I remember what a divided city this really is."

Read the full story here.

gay games donated record-high $150k to lgbt funds, report says

Gay Games 9 made history with donations of $120,000 for the Gay Games LGBT Legacy Fund at the Cleveland Foundation and $27,000 for the Gay Community Endowment Fund of Akron Community Foundation.

Final numbers were released this week at the “2014 Gay Games Lessons and Legacies” panel discussion hosted by The City Club. The donations represent the net profit from the Games, making the event the most profitable in the event's history.
 
“The ability to give back to the community is a testament to the Gay Games 9 board’s leadership, which placed importance on operating in a fiscally responsible manner, as well as the tremendous corporate and individual donor support,” said Gay Games 9 Executive Director Tom Nobbe in a statement.
 
Ronn Richard, President and CEO of the Cleveland Foundation, said when the Cleveland Foundation opted to become the first presenting sponsor in Gay Games history, it also made the commitment to launch the Gay Games LGBT Legacy Fund in partnership with GG9. “We’re thrilled the fund is able to launch with such a significant donation from the Games themselves. It’s a great continuation of our century-long commitment to social justice in our community and we’re excited to have the fund grow and make a difference in Greater Cleveland.”

Read the full report here.

cleveland playhouse named one of the 10 best regional theatres in u.s.

"The year 2015 marks the 100th anniversary of the Cleveland Play House, the country’s first professional regional theater. Over the decades, the company has created more than 1,300 productions, seen by more than 12 million people."

Read the full story here.

good magazine on 'the incredible story of chateau hough'

"Chateau Hough, one of the first American vineyards set on reclaimed urban land, was started in 2010 with a $15,000 grant from the city and about $8,000 of Frazier’s own cash. Frazier’s main objectives were to beautify the lot across from his house (hopefully raising its value) and help out parolees, who often have trouble finding work. But he also wanted to see if Cleveland’s most notorious neighborhood could maybe make a pretty damn good wine."

Read the full story here.

country living names cleveland flea one of the 7 best flea markets

"Not your average flea market, this pop-up event serves as a business incubator for small businesses and has helped spur development in the neighborhoods where it's held."

Read the full story here.

cle film fest announces opening night and closing night films

"The 39th Cleveland International Film Festival, presented by Dollar Bank, is proud to announce its Opening Night film on Wednesday, March 18, 2015 will be I’ll See You in My Dreams," CIFF announced in a recent press release.

"Directed by Brett Haley, the film had its World Premiere at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival. The film stars Blythe Danner as a widow who’s settled into her life and her age, until a series of events propel her into a renewed engagement with the people and the world around her. The film also stars Martin Starr, Sam Elliott, Malin Akerman, June Squibb, Rhea Perlman, and Mary Kay Place. The film was written by Brett Haley and Marc Basch, and produced by Rebecca Green, Laura D. Smith, and Brett Haley."

The closing night film will be Danny Collins, CIFF stated in the release.
 
"Danny Collins was written and directed by Dan Fogelman and produced by Jessie Nelson and Nimitt Mankad. The film stars Al Pacino as Danny Collins, an aging 1970s rocker who can't give up his hard-living ways. But when his manager (Christopher Plummer) uncovers a 40-year-old undelivered letter written to him by John Lennon, he decides to change course and embarks on a heartfelt journey to rediscover his family, find true love, and begin a second act."

You can purchase tickets at www.clevelandfilm.org.

near west theatre announces grand opening events, including free open house

Near West Theatre is planning a flurry of events to celebrate the grand opening of its new home in the Gordon Square Arts District.

"Everyone’s invited for a free sneak-peek inside during Near West Theatre’s Community Open House on Saturday, February 28 from 1-5 pm," the organization stated in a press release issued this week. "The celebration will feature tours, fun photo booths, refreshments, arts activities, grand opening merchandise and giveaways. A special opening ceremony ritual is planned for 3pm with Mayor Frank Jackson, Councilman Matt Zone, Gordon Square arts, business and community colleagues and NWT’s family of supporters."

The new marquee entrance sign is set to be installed before February 28th, and rehearsals for Shrek the Musical will also take place in the new space.

Opening celebration events will continue in March. Near West Theatre is organizing a "Blowout Dance Party" on Saturday, March 14th featuring popular soul band Westley Bright and the Hi-Lites. Near West Theatre's annual benefit and gala will take place on Saturday, March 21st. Finally, the organization's intergenerational production of Shrek the Music will run from April 24th-May 17th.

For more info, check Near West Theatre's website.

columbus dispatch: study of slavic village recovery says it's working

"With a foreclosure rate among the nation’s highest, Cleveland’s Slavic Village was a prime example of the country’s housing crisis. What had been a relatively stable neighborhood in a city struggling with industrial decline became one filled with blighted, vacant houses.

But a renovation and resale effort that began in 2013 and was led by two for-profit businesses and two nonprofit groups has proved fruitful and could be duplicated elsewhere in the state, including Columbus, according to a report by the Greater Ohio Policy Center."

Read the full story here.

healthline cited as model of bold, beautiful bus rapid transit

"Unlike standard bus stops, which are situated along the curb on opposite sides of a street, BRT stations function better in the center. There are practical reasons for this design, the biggest being that it's cheaper to build one nice station per stop than two. But it all comes back to presenting BRT more as a train platform than a bus stand (below, a rendering of a central station in Vientiane, Laos, and a finished one on the HealthLine BRT in Cleveland)."

Read the full story here.

brite winter festival announces its 2015 music lineup

A music festival in Cleveland ... in the dead of winter ... yes, this is a thing! Headliners of the sixth annual Brite Winter Festival are Cleveland’s own Welshley Arms, national act Maps & Atlases out of Chicago, Baltimore’s Sun Club, and locals The Modern Electric and Cobra Verde.

“We increased our music budget by fifty percent to allow us to draw bigger talent,” said Program Director Justin Markert in a release. “We’re also throwing some new ideas into the mix this year by booking a number of hip-hop and electronic artists to diversify the festival and fill a void from past years.”

All in all, the festival will feature 60 bands on eight stages. Check out the full lineup here.
65 Social Innovation Articles | Page: | Show All
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