P3 Becomes Partners for Hope

P3, a youth oriented organization dedicated to educating youngsters about the dangers of drug and alcohol abuse, underwent a transformation last year when it teamed with the Teen Center in Lamar. It’s still a Teen Center on East Elm Street in Lamar, but it’s becoming known as Partners for Hope. Meg Day of P3, and Lori Hammer of the Center joined forces, partly for economic reasons, and because each group focused on the same general goals for their audience.

They’ll learn this June if they’ll still be in existence. Day has been seeking grants for P3 for operating funds since it was created, and as of last year, both Hammer’s and Day’s operation would be funded from the same source, a Justice Assistance Grant. Everyone who read the paperwork on the latest grant was led to believe it provided funding for four years. Day was shocked to learn the funding was for one year only. And would have to repeat the application process all over again. And won’t know if funding will be available until June. Day told the Prowers County commissioners she’s also pursuing a line of grants that has funded BOCES operations in the past. This past winter, there were plans to use facilities at the Lincoln school as the Teen Center, which hosts from 70 to 90 youngsters each afternoon after school, is as crowded as you can get. They had to regroup when it was decided to close Lincoln for budgetary reasons.

She’s also applying with the federal government for a non-profit, 501c3 status. Day and Hammer have been in touch with the Lamar Re-2 district and will have the district, not the county act as the pass through for future funding. She and Hammer and new superintendent of schools, Dave Tecklenburg met with the commissioners during their Thursday meeting, May 12 to provide a status up-date. Tecklenburg said he was not familiar with the agreement, but will review the matter with the school board. Tecklenburg is working to get up to speed since he was appointed to the position following the abrupt resignation of former superintendent, David Soper late last month.

There’s enough funding to allow for monthly summer programs including a talent show that combines a display of learned subjects and crafts developed over the school year. That performance is set for Friday, May 13 at 6pm at the Lamar High School Auditorium. Day said she’s planning ‘parent parties’ allowing the Partners staff to meet with parents of some children at the Teen Center, and has a ‘boys only’ night set, during which time youngsters can pair off with male mentors and role models.

Day told the commissioners, “There’s enough funding right now to get us through to October. If the grant fails, we’ll look at partial funding alternatives in order to continue the work.”

By Russ Baldwin


Filed Under: communityEducationLamarYouth


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