PASADENA–Senator Adam B. Schiff (D-Burbank) and Assemblymember Scott Wildman (D-Burbank–Glendale–Los Angeles) have requested in recent weeks state funding for the improvment of the Homenetmen Glendale Ararat chapter. Senator Schiff has made a one-time funding request from the California Youth Authority on behalf of the Glendale Youth group. Assemblymember Scott Wildman (D-Burbank–Glendale–Los Angeles) submitted a budget augmentation request of $79,000 to maintain and increase youth recreational programs sponsored by the chapter.
The Glendale chapter of the Armenian General Athletic Union and Scouts–commonly known as Homenetmen–has provided youth services for more than twenty years in athletic. Its cultural and leadership development programs have been effective in preventing substance abuse–juvenile delinquency–gang involvement–and academic failure.
The Glendale chapter currently serves about 1,500 youth–ages 7-18–seven days a week–but unfortunately must turn away some 400 youngsters annually due to limited spaces. Grant moneys from the CYA will help create the additional physical space needed to serve an additional 500 youth–and consequently expand outreach and mentioning programs already in place. Moreover–the facility will be available to seniors–parent groups and other non-profit organizations in the community.
Under the provisions of SB 2796–the Juvenile and Gang Violence Prevention–Detention–and Public Protection Act co-authored by Senator Schiff and passed last year–$25 million was appropriated for allocation to non-profit organizations for acquiring–renovating–or constructing local youth centers. "As principal co-author of the bill–I am pleased that organizations like Homenetmen are taking advantage of the funding source to implement much-needed youth services in our communities," said Schiff.
"The availability of diverse recreational activities located at a supportive learning environment is one of the most effective ways to keep our children away from drugs–crime and violence. The Homenetmen Glendale Ararat Chapter has proven to be an effective influence on the youths in our community," stated Assemblymember Scott Wildman.
"On behalf of the entire Homenetmen’staff–membership–families and children volunteers–I would like to thank Assemblyman Wildman for submitting this request. We currently provide a caring and learning environment for over 1500 youths and would like to see that number grow even more. This budget augmentation will allow us to better serve our community," said Armond Gorgorian–Executive Director of the Homenetmen Glendale Ararat Chapter.
The full budget committee will hear Assemblyman Wildman’s budget augmentation request in the coming months.
"Supporting community-based organizations with a proven record of juvenile delinquency prevention through mentoring and other activities is vital to dealing with one of today’s most pressing issues," said Schiff–chair of the Senate Select Committee on Juvenile Justice. During the past two years–Senator Schiff has secured funding for a number of youth service organizations in the 21st Senate District–including Project YES in Glendale and the Pasadena Youth Center.