DRAFT Youth Program as of January 29. 2012

INITIATIVES TO IMPROVE ECONOMICS--SOUTHERN WEST VIRGINIA COALFIELDS The Rural Appalachian Improvement League, Inc. (RAIL) mission is to build programs and take action that will promote community and economic development in the southern West Virginia coalfields. RAIL headquarters is in Mullens, WV where the efforts are needed and where the community itself has taken on the task of building an economy that is not dependent on an unpredictable and limited life industry. RAIL guidelines stipulate that all efforts and projects must produce a product or Tangible Measurable Outcome (TMO). RAIL was founded in 2001 by volunteers. RAIL has established many programs, most importantly, transforming the former Mullens elementary school into the Mullens Opportunity Center (MOC) in 2001. The MOC facilities are provided by the Wyoming County School Board and is home for the following efforts and entities—  Diabetes and Healthy Lifestyle program sponsored by Marshall University  Upper Guyandotte Watershed Association http://www.ugwawv.org/ (founded by RAIL)  Groundwork Wyoming County http://groundworkwc.org/ (here through RAIL efforts)  Youth Program (youth are paid minimum wage for community development training)  MOC established schedule for a Spring and Fall Craft Show, Quarterly Gun Shows  Coal Heritage Trail of New Commerce Initiatives program  MOC facilities include 22 classrooms, gym, kitchen, outside stage-Campsites and RV sites planned for 2012  Jack Feller Mini Museum/Tourist Information Center RAIL has embarked on a mission of transforming the southern WV coalfields economy into an entrepreneurial society. Properly and adequately administered our At Risk youth can become a valuable factor in implementing many components of the plan we have named COAL HERITAGE TRAIL OF NEW COMMERCE (CHTNC). A well designed program will provide our youth with a little income, help them develop a vocation based on creative use of our local resources, design those resources to conform to green environmental conditions, and in that process build the CHTNC. The bottom line is utilizing our at risk youth to help build a new and sustainable economy they can participate in. Our plan is based on minimum wage benefits paid to youth participants by HRDF of Morgantown and Workforce WV in Beckley. Additionally we base program on experiences we have had with youth participating in our program at the Mullens Opportunity Center. At years end we had 12 young people enrolled after school to do work related training. We propose to utilize the MOC as headquarters for a pilot program to employ At Risk youth during hours and time school is not in session. High points of the proposed program are as follows—  Young people, under 22 years old, who are At Risk to not complete at least a high school equivalency, enroll in a program at the Mullens Opportunity Center to earn minimum wages, enhance their education, and develop job skills to better support themselves.  During the school year 20 or more students will participate in 120 hours in a six month period and will be paid minimum wage by HRDF.  During the summer when school is not in session 20 or more At Risk students will work 30 hours per week and will be paid minimum wages by Work Force West Virginia.  While in the program participants must spend % of their time—  15% studying for furthering their education.  40% toward community and economic development activities.  10% studying, constructing, practicing, and teaching green initiatives.  15% in Junior Achievement or Entrepreneurial Activities  20% Training in emergency management It is very important to point out this is proposal cannot be fully implemented until the following criteria is met. • Firstly we must continue partnership with Workforce West Virginia to pay participants. • Secondly we must continue partnership with HRDF and Workforce WV to pay participants. Through HRDF we have just completed a cycle and are hiring 12 youth to work in the program through June. • Thirdly RAIL must have funding to fully implement the program to mentor 40 or more young people in 2012. Major partnerships include—  Wyoming County School Board of Education that provides facilities and GED after school program at MOC.  RISA 1 to help support GED and other related programs.  Rural Appalachian Improvement League, Inc. to bring together resources and manage youth program.  Human Resource Development Foundation provides assistance in developing a comprehensive plan and funding to pay youth wages and insurance protection during school year.  Workforce WV provides assistance to develop a comprehensive plan and funding to pay youth wages and insurance protection during summer months.  WV Development office CPGP grant of $20,000 being provided on recommendation of Senator Browning to purchase materials for projects.  Marshall University providing funding for healthy lifestyle initiatives.  Unnamed at this time private foundations, businesses, and governments to fund program in a way that will adequately staff and fund program to attain best results from youth program. YOUTH PROGRAM BUDGET AT MULLENS OPPORTUNITY CENTER 2012 Job Skills Training Coordinator..………………………………………………..……… $ 42,000 Part Time Junior Achievement Trainer/Business Administrator...……………………... 12,000 Space at Mullens Opportunity Center………………………………………………….. 6,000 Includes as needed; Gym, Kitchen, Computer Lab, GED Classroom, Includes full time; Office; Telephone and Internet; Community Garden Administrative Costs…………………………………………………………………….. 6,000 Office Material and Supplies…………………………………………………………….. 2,400 Farming and Agricultural Supplies……………………………………………………… 3,600 Travel Expenses………………………………………………………………………….. 3,600 Educational Materials and Supplies……………………………………………………… 1,200 Tools and Equipment……………………………………………………………………… 3,200 Food and Incentives……………………………………………………………………….. 1,800 Transportation Costs………………………………………………………………………. 12,000 Insurance and Legal Costs………………………………………………………………… 3,200 * Total Project Budget………………………………………………………………...... $97,000 *Total does not include cost for youth participants’ hourly pay. MOC YOUTH PROGRAM PROJECTS A. MOC Adding 6 Dorm Rooms B. MOC Adding 14 RV and Campers sites C. MOC Adding 20 primitive camp sites D. MOC Furnace Room remove outdated gas furnace, install 12 shower heads, four toilets E. MOC Constructing blacksmith shed F. MOC Planting/sponsoring community garden G. MOC Maintaining Facilities H. Maintain and staff Jack Feller Mini Museum/Tourist Information Center I. House repair elderly and disabled J. Clearing marking Great Eastern Trail K. Clean up and mark Historic Sites L. Marking Mountain Biking Trail and sponsoring two mountain biking competitions M. Sponsoring four running competitions (two during Boy Scout Jamboree) N. Establish and maintain Recycle Center in Mullens O. Establish program to grow and preserve local agricultural products P. Clearing and planting at least one orchard Q. Sponsoring and supporting area gardens, Establishing mushroom farm R. Junior Achievement/Creative and entrepreneurship education Businesses examples-worm farm, fish bait business, firewood, establishing ice business, growing mushrooms and specialty agricultural products S. Set up projects for five busloads (40 per bus) of Boy Scouts in 2013 T. Develop plan to mobilize and act in the event of any kind of catastrophic event U. Maintain the 10 public parks and community development sites that will be established in 2012-2013 as a Boy Scout community service initiative. DHHRSecretary@wv.gov Michael J. Lewis, M.D., Ph.D., Cabinet Secretary West Virginia Department of Health & Human Resources One Davis Square, Suite 100 East Charleston, West Virginia 25301 Phil Leinbach, Director-Education, Training & Employment Services Human Resources Development Foundation 1644 Mileground Road Morgantown, WV 26505 304 296 8223 c 304 623 6367 Tammie Lilly, Youth Program Manager WORKFORCE WV CAREER CENTER 200 Value City Center, Suite 404 Beckley, WV 25801 Assistant Program Manager, Angie Henson (304) 253-3039 COAL HERITAGE TRAIL OF NEW COMMERCE or (CHTONC) Focus Area: All of Wyoming and McDowell Counties as well as Upper Guyandotte Watershed in Raleigh County and Upper Bluestone Watershed in Mercer County Project Directors needed for the following Components—  Economic Development.  Organize a Cooperative of Commercial Enterprises to network, advertise, and promote commerce along the CHTONC.  Establish a land use plan.  Educate public and local government on value of zoning and building codes.  Establish GPS Locater to pinpoint businesses and others entities that can provide information pertinent to CHTONC participants.  Assist 40 entrepreneurs in building a business based on resources within the region.  Marketing Bed and Breakfast, Marketing unique quality hand crafted items, marketing variety of quality agricultural products.  Community Development.  Streamline Mullens Opportunity Center for sustainability and profitability.  Establish Junior Achievement in six high schools in our targeted area.  Extending, expanding and improving life quality programs for elderly and disabled.  Organize and streamline housing repair for elderly and those in poverty.  Establish graduate program with Goddard College-Dealing with Poverty Effectively.  Expand Adult Education (GED) and Healthy Lifestyle programs at MOC to four locations.  Agriculture and Aquiculture.  Establish at least one self-sustaining farm.  Reestablish one of the defunct fish farms.  Fishing for sporting, fun, and good eating--Catch your lunch.  Expand and improve the Farmers Market Program.  Promoting specialty farming--goats for meat and cheese, shiitake mushrooms, etc.  Build green houses on Mountain Top Removal sites.  Culture and Historical Preservation/ Recreation and Tourism Development  Stotesbury (Mark Twain School Site) established as Gateway to the Southern West Virginia Coalfields and mount campaign to establish appropriate honorarium for Senator Byrd.  Complete restoration of Wyco church by end of 2011.  Place Beartown School on National Register and begin Restoration.  Place Tams church on National Register and begin Restoration.  Catalog listing of historic sites and lay ground work to mount a campaign to assure no more structures or historic sites are lost to neglect and decay.  Expand and increase efforts to record Coal Camp Culture by those that lived it.  Addressing Environmental and Green Initiatives.  Study utilizing local coal bed or other methane and/or biomass to provide electricity.  Develop 1,200 acre wildlife sanctuary on Abandoned Mine Lands Brownfields site.  Develop quail, pheasant, turkey, and trophy deer on mountain top removal sites.  Producing fruits, vegetables, fish locally to save on transportation/improve local nutrition.  Study wind and solar farms on mountain top mining sites as energy source.  Build Biofuel program to power greenhouses and other major initiatives. Rural Appalachian Improvement League, Inc. September 6, 2010 COAL HERITAGE TRAIL OF NEW COMMERCE PROJECTS PARKS; OUTDOOR EDUCATION; ENVIRONMENTAL; AND GREEN INITIATIVES Projects Presently Under Way Robert C Byrd Home Place Memorial Park—Gateway to Southern West Virginia Coalfields. Located at Stotesbury about four miles from Sophia on the Alternate Coal Heritage Trail. Bugs Stover Arboretum/Education Center Located four miles north of Mullens on Rt. 54 near Maben and intersection of Rt. 97. Community Garden/Agricultural/Environmental/ Green Initiatives Training Center. Located at Mullens Opportunity Center in Mullens. Projects Under Study New Richmond Guyandotte River Park and River Environmental Quality Study Site. Located near New Richmond on Rt. 16 near Wyoming East High School. Fruit and Nut Experimental Mountain Orchard. Located on Rt. 16 between Pineville and Welch. Parks and recreation facilities are very important to enticing people to live in a particular area. Good quality Parks are equally important to attracting tourism and are pleasing to families living within the area served making them a sound investment in community development. Drawbacks to establishing Parks are finding good locations, establishing ownership of the land, design creativity to fit the site, and funding to do initial construction. Drawbacks to maintaining unsupervised parks and recreational facilities are vandalism, maintenance and upkeep. The Rural Appalachian Improvement League, Inc. has for some time worked to build facilities that will enhance the chances of attracting business and tourists into the coalfields. We are now looking to build partnerships that will establish ten public park facilities, on or in close proximity to the Coal Heritage Trail, that are designed for recreation, outdoor education, environmental conservation, and green initiatives. Establishing and building these amenities will require strengthening the RAIL leadership, labor, funding, and overcoming our drawbacks. Having access to the former Mullens grade school building and good supervision has allowed RAIL to build an outstanding youth program. We presently have 12 youth (in pursuit of a high school accreditation) under the age 20 earning minimum wage doing community service. Our youth can give a strong assist in building and maintaining the facilities. Once we have a project identified we will set up budget to include surveillance equipment to help deal with vandalism. Timing is very important. Ten work sites will provide volunteer service for at least five busloads of Boy Scouts each day so the design needs to take that into account. Marketing the parks as a connection to the coming of the Scouts will help in building partnerships and attracting funding.
    

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Volunteers are a vital part of RAIL's success. We are SEEKING VOLUNTEERS! Please contact us if you want to make a difference and join our remarkable work teams.

In September 2010 RAIL volunteers began initiating a plan to invigorate Community and Economic development in the southern coalfields of West Virginia. In the past ten years RAIL has studied the needs of families in Appalachia as well as available resources and other accessible opportunities that can help their community become sustainable. Gaining a better understanding of what is needed has culminated in the Coal Heritage Trail of New Commerce Action Plan. Those implementing this plan, an organization at the grass roots, well understand their work cannot be successful without the help of volunteers and generous resources providers. Anyone interested in participating in this bold undertaking of helping families living in the Appalachian coalfields improve their economic and social conditions may contact mullensproject@aol.com for more information. RAIL gets its name from Rural Appalachian Improvement League, Inc. and can best be described as Volunteers coming together as an organization to find ways to best benefit their community

March 18, 2011

Alternative Spring Break
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