Posts Tagged ‘ Free ’

Twin Cities RISE!

Twin Cities RISE! St. Paul location

Twin Cities RISE! St. Paul location

About Twin cities RISE!

460 Lexington Parkway N., Saint Paul
(651) 603-0295

Open House

Twin Cities RISE! will host an open house in St. Paul Nov. 4 from 3 to 6 p.m.

As a result of extreme poverty and negative self-image, many struggle to find suitable employment. Since 1994, Twin Cities RISE! has helped to end the cycle of failure for individuals lacking education, resources and self-esteem, especially those battling with criminal histories or patterns of substance abuse. The belief at RISE! is that every person deserves a chance to soar. With a program that is free for participants, RISE! trains clients in job skills, helps them get GEDs, and places them in internships in the areas of office support, warehouse operations, and construction, with the goal of achieving permanent job placement.

Where RISE! differs from other job training programs is its focus — not strictly based on technical or “hard” skills, this program is rooted on teaching empowerment, meaning the cultivation of the “soft” skills of self-esteem, respect for self and others. Participants work one-on-one with a coach, learning skills for permanent placement in a career that pays living wages, benefits and offers opportunities for advancement. The goals are set by the clients, who learn they control their own destiny.

We spoke with both Shelly Jacobson, Chief Operating Officer, and Cynthia Micolichek, Director of Human Resources and Special Projects. Jacobson said the biggest challenge has been the time and commitment it takes to complete the program. “When you are hungry and need a job, you need a job. It is a real commitment to wait six, eight, or 18 months [clients choose from several options]. We do encourage participants to work part-time and offer day and evening classes for this reason. But people get nervous and scared,” she said. To make the program more accessible, RISE! partners with other agencies to deal with issues of transportation, childcare, housing, health and psychological care. “We want to bring positive things and be an anchor to help the community thrive,” added Micolichek.

RISE! serves those facing many obstacles with 58 percent of their clients having a criminal history. Many of the women have come from abusive relationships and are single parents. But the success rate has been astonishing with 82 percent of graduates still holding their jobs after one year, and 72 percent after two years. Graduates of the program also have an extremely low recidivism rate of 12 percent — compared to the national average of 61 percent. Even with the recent layoffs and economic downturn, RISE! steadily placed graduates in jobs in 2009 and 2010 with an average yearly income of $24,488.

“We strive to develop leaders in the community and in the marketplace. The graduates really stand out — we look for problem solvers, team players, people who seek solutions and have internal reflection,” said Jacobson. The most rewarding moment, both women agreed, is when a client achieves final job placement — a large bell rings in the hallway at RISE! to mark the occasion. “Everyone stops what they are doing and goes to celebrate,” said Jacobson, “and that is the most satisfying moment.”

Community Festival

Join us for the 2nd Annual St. Thomas More Fall Festival on from 1-7 p.m. Oct. 16 in the rear playground of the St. Thomas More Catholic School, 1065 Summit Ave., St. Paul (map). Free Admisson, Game tickets $1. Live bands: Star Michaelina, Teddy Bear Band, The Playdough Project and Lynhurst. Food off the grill, cash raffle, fellowship, friendship and community.

Application Deadline Friday

Building Connections to Community Program: A Three Session Leadership Training Program

  • The Building Connections to Community program is designed to introduce people to community work and focuses on helping participants develop a greater awareness of themselves, make connections with others in the community, and build skills to more actively engage in the community.
  • 3 sessions
  • Program is FREE for participants

Click here for an informational flyer and application.

(If you apply, you’re committing to attend all 3 sessions)

  1. Saturday, May 8 – 9:00 am – 3:00 pm
  2. Saturday, May 15 – 9:00 – 3:00 pm
  3. Saturday, May 22 – 9:00 – 12:30 pm

o   Child care is available.
o   Learning occurs through engagement in group activities, small group discussions, personal and shared reflection, and exchange of personal experiences.
o   Fill out your application and send it to PattiJo Verdeja at Wilder or by phone at 651-280-2457
o   It’s a great leadership development opportunity at no cost to the participant.

Helping Our Elders

ASANDC/Freedom House provides Senior Chore Service for elders in our community. Free services offered include:

  • Trimming
  • Gutter Cleaning
  • Pulling Weeds
  • Raking leaves
  • Painting
  • House cleaning
  • Lawn Mowing
  • Window Washing
  • Furniture moving
  • Minor repairs, and much more !

Sign-Up Today! Call: 651-222-0399

Building Sustainable Communities Roundtable

LISC logoJoin Model Cities, the Alliance for Metropolitan Stability, Aurora/St. Anthony NDC and other Frogtown Rondo Action Network partners at an Organizer Roundtable — Community Partnerships for Success: Building Sustainable Communities from noon to 2 p.m. Wednesday, February 24, at Model Cities Community Room, 839 University Avenue, Saint Paul. (Map/Directions or Transit Planner)

In 2007, the Twin Cities was chosen by the national Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) to carry out a Building Sustainable Communities demonstration to promote more integrated and comprehensive approaches to community development. Twin Cities LISC is implementing the project with a focus on five areas: St. Paul’s East Side, the Central Corridor, Minneapolis’ north and south sides, and the suburban community of Hopkins. They chose these areas because each offers a multitude of potential partners, opportunities and issues.

Come hear from community leaders involved in the program about their efforts to direct resources toward community-based projects already under way that would otherwise be constrained by limited means and abilities. Join in the dialogue about how innovative partnerships like this can leverage resources for community projects.

Organizer Roundtables are free but registration is required. Light snacks will be provided. Feel free to bring your lunch.

Black History Month Events at Libraries

Duke Ellington

Duke Ellington in the 1971 film "Jazz Odyssey." Creative Commons-licensed image by Louis Panassié.

Here’s a look at upcoming Black History Month events at St. Paul libraries:

  • Saturday, February 20. 1-3 p.m.
    “My People”
    Central Library (90 W. Fourth St., Saint Paul. 651-266-7000)
    Tony Garrett will present “My People”, a genealogical journey about his family and the importance of preserving family history. Program immediately followed at 3 p.m. by a Genealogy Workshop by Saint Paul Public Librarian James Moriarty to teach program attendees how to use the ancestry library.
  • Saturday, February 20. 10-11 a.m.
    “Stories of Hope”
    by Isabell Monk O’Connor
    Merriam Park Branch Library (1831 Marshall Ave., Saint Paul. 651-642-0385)
    Acclaimed actress, author and educator Isabell Monk O’Connor will read stories from our national past that are heavily influenced by the African-American journey.
  • Sunday, February 21. 2-4 p.m.
    “Take the A Train to the Library for a Tribute to Duke Ellington”
    Central Library-Magazine Room
    Vocalist Debbie Duncan and saxophonist Dean Brewington will perform with a stellar quartet in this tribute to the late and very great Duke Ellington.
  • Monday, February 22. 7 p.m.
    “A Face of Courage”
    Sun Ray Branch Library (2105 Wilson Ave., Saint Paul. 651-501-6300)
    Tommy Watson is an elementary school principal and example to others of how one man came from a poverty and crime-ridden neighborhood, to achieve personal success and inspire others. He is the author of A Face of Courage: The Tommy Watson Story- How Did He Survive?
  • Wednesday, February 24. 7 p.m.
    “A Literary Evening with Alexs Pate”
    Hamline Midway Branch Library (1558 W. Minnehaha Ave., Saint Paul. 651-642-0293)
    Alexs Pate, best-selling author, hosts a fireside gathering to discuss his varied literary career an thoughts about being an African-American writer today.
  • Saturday, February 27. 10-11 a.m.
    “Stories of Hope”
    Highland Park Branch Library (1974 Ford Pkwy., Saint Paul. 651-695-3700)
    Storytelling by Isabell Monk O’Connor
  • Sunday, February 28. 2-4 p.m.
    “Warm Up on a Cold Day to Super Cool Miles Davis”
    Rondo Community Outreach Library (461 N. Dale St., Saint Paul. 651-266-7400)
    The Dean Brewington Quartet will perform with vocalist extraordinaire Lila Ammons.
  • Sunday, February 28. 2 p.m.
    Central Library- 4th floor Meeting Room
    Watch “Dreamgirls,” the film adaptation of a 1981 Broadway musical that tells a story of R&B and Motown funk, based loosely on the lives and career of The Supremes.

Admission is free for all events. This programming is funded in part with money from the vote of the people of Minnesota on November 4, 2008, which dedicated funding to preserve Minnesota’s arts and cultural heritage.

Surf’s Up!

This year’s Ward 1 Beach Party, organized by Ward 1 City Councilmember Melvin Carter III, will be held from 2 to 6 p.m. Dec. 19 at the city’s newest recreation center and only indoor water park, Oxford Community Center, 270 Lexington Parkway North (click here for map/directions).

The free event will include food, community resource information, water park access, activities for the whole family, and great prizes and giveaways.