Federal funds to help South Mississippi youth - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Federal funds to help South Mississippi youth

GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) -

A program in Gulfport is getting federal funding to help youth better their lives.

U.S. Senator Thad Cochran said the program will receive more than $1 million from the U.S. Department of Labor. Children in the YouthBuild program receive an alternate path for completing their education and learning career skills.

"YouthBuild provides young people with an alternative path for completing their education and learning career skills. The Gulfport program will be able to use this funding to continue its good work on the Mississippi Gulf Coast," said Cochran, chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee.

The YouthBuild eligible youth education assistance to earn their GED while also gaining construction and other skills that can lead to employment opportunities. Participants can also earn an AmeriCorps education award for post-secondary schooling.

Leaders in Gulfport say the funding is great news for the city's program.

"It's giving kids the opportunity for a new direction, and I think it's incredible," said Chris Vignes, with the City of Gulfport.

The $1,098,940 Labor Department grant has been awarded to CLIMB Community Development Corp. to operate the Gulfport YouthBuild program, which provides educational and occupational instruction to low-income, at-risk youths.  The YouthBuild grant requires a 25 percent nonfederal, matching contributions.

The program in Gulfport is one of 77 programs in the country to receive funding this year.

Copyright 2016 WLOX. All rights reserved.

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