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Sponsors needed to help with free haircuts, school supplies for youth

youngvisionariesYoung Visionaries Youth Leadership Academy is holding their 8th Annual “Get Geared Up and Groomed Up” event offering free haircuts and school supplies to youth ages 17 and under in San Bernardino.

The event will be held on Friday, Aug. 1 from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at Marinello School of Beauty, 721 W. 2nd Street, Suite E, San Bernardino, CA 92410 .

The event is by appointment only.

Contact Lizette Lopez at Young Visionaries at (909) 881-3382 or at  llopez@yvyla-ie.org to make an appointment or to make donations for backpacks and school supplies.

Young Visionaries has already secured 200 backpacks from sponsors NBC4, NID Housing Counseling Agency and the Marinello School of Beauty, but is asking the community to help out with more supplies.

This event is another example of community-based organizations collaborating on the Countywide Vision’s regional goal of helping every child from cradle to career.



County to link health, education and housing with $32K grant

SBCDPH-logoWith a $32,000 grant from The California Endowment via the Riverside County Department of Public Health, San Bernardino County will conduct an education-based demonstration project that will help youth move up and out of affordable housing communities located throughout the county.

This project represents the Countywide Vision in action, with a particular focus on one of  the Vision’s regional goals of partnering with all sectors of the community to support the success of every child from cradle to career.

The Departments of Public Health, Community Development and Housing, and the San Bernardino County Superintendent of Schools are collaborating on a plan that will help residents attain appropriate reading levels by the third grade, learn how to improve nutrition and increase physical activity, and address bullying and school safety.

An affordable housing development will be identified to introduce a training module through its resident services program, which will help individuals attain core skills that will help them achieve wellness and confidence.

“This demonstration project seeks to address education, nutrition and school safety, which are three of the top community wellness priorities established through the Community Vital Signs initiative during 2013, and to promote the Countywide Vision’s Cradle to Career goal,” said Trudy Raymundo, director of the San Bernardino County Department of Public Health.

The purpose of the grant is to introduce the concept of “Health in All Policies.”  Success of the project will demonstrate the benefit of introducing policy that will enable similar training programs in affordable housing throughout San Bernardino and Riverside counties.  The California Endowment is a private, statewide health foundation with a mission to expand access to affordable, quality health care for underserved individuals and communities, and to promote fundamental improvements in the health status of all Californians.

San Bernardino barber offers free haircuts, school supplies to kids

barberpoleTrevaughn Moore of Luxury Cuts in San Bernardino pooled his resources together and offered children and teenagers free haircuts and school supplies on Sunday.

“San Bernardino has more to offer,” Moore told the San Bernardino Sun. “San Bernardino isn’t a dead, no-good city.”

Luxury Cuts, located at 1357 Kendall Drive in San Bernardino also had free entertainment and food booths outside the shop. The newspaper reported about 150 kids came in to get schools supplies and about 50 got haircuts within the first couple of hours.

Leonard Lighten, who owns the shop, told the newspaper: “People still care about human beings. People care about those who are less fortunate than others.”

This effort exemplifies the Countywide Vision because it promotes the quality of life, wellness and education of our residents.

Read more about the event here.

Victor Valley College secures $15 million California Career Pathways Trust Grant

victorvalleycollegeA forward-thinking group of educators and business partners led by Victor Valley College were awarded a $15 million California Career Pathways Trust grant by the California Department of Education. The Victor Valley Community College District Consortium and its RAMP UP project received one of just 12 awards made at the highest funding level and was among almost 40 groups funded in total state wide. The Victor Valley Consortium received the only grant awarded within the Inland Empire.

The consortium includes five community colleges, 19 high schools, 4 charter schools and dozens of employers.  The RAMP UP project focuses on seamless career technical training programs that start in high school, continue through college and result in jobs within five career pathways:  Automotive / Diesel Maintenance, Aviation Maintenance, Energy and Utilities including Renewable Energy Technology, Healthcare and Manufacturing and Design.  These fields are expected to provide high-wage, high-skill and high-growth job opportunities within the region served by this California Career Pathways Trust project.

“We have many pockets of success in the delivery of career pathways across our vast region, but they are currently isolated and some are incomplete,” said Ginger Ontiveros, Executive Director of the Victor Valley College Foundation which spearheaded the development of the grant proposal. “RAMP UP will not only help students to accelerate their journey from cradle to career, but it will also change the way our schools work together with business and industry to deliver the workforce of tomorrow.”

The cornerstone of the RAMP UP project is a network of teleconferencing classrooms that will facilitate cooperative classes and virtual workplace learning experiences for students within the region that stretches from San Bernardino to Barstow and Lucerne Valley to Lancaster.   It further fuels greater collaboration among educators and employers to increase the attainment of industry-recognized certifications that are required in local careers.

The California Career Pathways Trust established a one-time $250 million competitive grant program to create sustained career pathway programs that connect businesses, K-12 schools, and community colleges to better prepare students for the 21st century workplace.

“To make good on our goal of a world-class education for every California student, they have to graduate with the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in the real world,” said State Superintendent of Schools Tom Torlakson. “By demonstrating the relevance of students’ education, these programs not only encourage kids to stay in school, but also combine the rigorous academics and the practical experience employers say they need.”

State officials received 123 eligible applications requesting more than $700 million in support, nearly triple the available funding.  Applicants included community college districts, county offices of education, direct-funded charter schools and school districts from all over California.

In addition to Victor Valley College, the RAMP UP Project will include Antelope Valley College, Barstow Community College, Crafton Hills College, and San Bernardino Valley College.  Participating High School Districts include Antelope Valley, Apple Valley, Barstow, Hesperia, Lucerne Valley, San Bernardino City, South Kern County, Snowline, Victor Valley, and Yucaipa-Calimesa.  Charter Schools involved in the consortium include Excelsior Education Centers, the Lewis Center and The Palmdale Aerospace Academy.

The Victor Valley College Foundation is a resource development and public relations partner supporting educational opportunities at Victor Valley College.

ESRI invites pros to mentor students and teachers


Jack Dangermond, President and Founder of Esri

Last week, Redlands-based ESRI announced it would make its advanced mapping software ArcGIS available to K-12 schools across the country.

Now the company is asking for mentors to help students and teachers get started using the mapping software, ArcGIS Online.

GIS professionals can become GeoMentors in their communities and launch a GIS program at a local school or engage with high schools on specific projects.

Using ArcGIS Online helps students with a variety of skills that lead to college and career readiness, according to Esri’s website.

For more information about becoming a GeoMentor, click here.

Redlands’ ESRI pledges $1 billion in software to U.S. schools

JackDangermondRedlands-based mapping software giant Esri, operated and founded by Redlands native Jack Dangermond, has made a major commitment to America’s K-12 and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) education efforts, pledging to provide $1 billion in mapping software to 100,000 U.S. schools.

Esri announced on Tuesday that it will make its advanced mapping software ArcGIS available to K-12 schools across the country. Through the program, students will now have access to the cloud-based software — the same GIS technology used by governments and businesses — to map and analyze data.

“Geographic Information System technology gives students powerful tools for understanding our planet, and teaches them to become problem solvers,” Dangermond said. “It is a perfect complement to STEM courses and many other classroom activities, while preparing students for further education and expanding career opportunities in fields that can help better manage our world, build better lives for more people, and design a better future.”

According to Forbes magazine, it all started when Dangermond met with President Obama a few months ago to discuss how Esri can contribute to the ConnectED Initiative, a program by the White House to help strengthen STEM education for K-12 students across the country. “I asked myself: ‘What’s the biggest idea that we can go for?’” Dangermond recalled in an interview with Forbes. As soon as he proposed that Esri would offer its software for free for every K-12 school in America, the President was immediately on board. “We thought this is a way to scale it up and bring GIS education to schools in the whole country,” Dangermond said.

By bringing the tool to K-12 classrooms across the country, Dangermond is hoping that students will learn “creative problem-solving” through hands-on projects. He gave an example of “Get The Lead Out,” a project in which students in Detroit used the company’s software to identify environmental issues and come up with plans to fix them. “It let kids to use analytics and come up with ideas for their own communities,” Dangermond said. “The kids learned citizenship, science, problem-solving, and political involvement.”

While bringing the mapping software to all the public K-12 schools is a big step forward, Esri has experimented with the initiative on a smaller scale over the past few years in different states. Students who benefited from the program have researched a wide array of topics, from mapping out health issues in Los Angeles to using demographic data to get Walmart products delivered to returning veterans, according to the billionaire.

“This kind of project-based learning is going to have an impact on the students,” Dangermond said. “We have to build a better education in this country. We need to step it up.”


Business-friendly best practices established across the county

Businesswoman Assisting CustomersIn May 2012, the SANBAG Board of Directors and the County Board of Supervisors adopted implementation goals for the Countywide Vision. One of the implementation goals was to establish San Bernardino County as a model in the state where local governments, regulatory agencies and communities are truly business friendly.

The Jobs/Economy Element Group that consists of representatives of the business community as well as staff from SANBAG and the County took up this implementation goal. One of the tasks that they identified was to find a way for local governments and businesses to share what already works.

The Business-Friendly Best Practices Inventory is the result.

This Inventory was compiled from a survey sent to every city and the County asking them to identify “Business Friendly” practices and programs.  Also included are some best practices identified by other governmental organizations in reports from the U.S. Conference of Mayors, the Washington State Governor’s Office of Regulatory Assistance, the Massachusetts Association of Regional Planning Agencies, the University of North Carolina School of Government, and the Southern California Association of Governments.

Insights were also gained during a Countywide Vision workshop on best practices in development processing between cities and developers and hosted by SANBAG, the County and the Building Industry Association (BIA).

Read the Best Practices Inventory here: Business-Friendly Best Practices Inventory.

Read the Building Industry Association Baldy View Chapter’s Best Recommended Practices.

Micro libraries encourage literacy

Man Reading Book and Sitting on Bookshelf in LibraryRedlands resident Gabe Ramirez joined with area organizations to open two Micro Libraries in the city to help people gain access to books and promote literacy.

The libraries are located at the Greater Good Coffee Company in downtown Redlands and the Boys and Girls Clubs of Redlands’ Hansberger Clubhouse on Clay Street.

The libraries are mostly full of children’s books but also carry books for everybody’s interest.

Read more about Ramirez’s efforts in the Redlands Daily Facts here.



San Bernardino County and CEO Devereaux honored for civic excellence

County Seal No BackgroundSan Bernardino County has distinguished itself among Southern California communities, receiving four of 13 awards for excellence and sustainability granted by the Southern California Association of Governments on Thursday, May 1.

San Bernardino County’s Chief Executive Officer Gregory C. Devereaux, the Countywide Vision, San Bernardino County business leader Randall Lewis, and Yucaipa’s revitalization program were all honored with awards.

Mr. Devereaux was named Public Service Leader of the Year and recognized for his outstanding civic leadership for his many years of service in Southern California. Mr. Devereaux played a leading role in assisting the county’s elected leadership in developing the Countywide Vision. He is a consistent and regular leader on best practices for our communities on business revitalization and investments.

The honor is particularly prestigious because the Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) is the nation’s largest metropolitan planning organization, representing six counties, 191 cities and more than 18 million residents.

Mr. Lewis, Executive Vice President for the Lewis Group of Companies, was also recognized as the Sustainability Leader of the Year.

Mr. Lewis is regarded as an industry leader in promoting the arts, education, healthy living and sustainable development initiatives. He was recognized for contributing company resources to establish a student fellows program in many cities in the SCAG’s six-county region, increasing community awareness of community health.

“These gentlemen are true leaders in our region and our state, and we’re proud to honor them as President’s Award winners,” said Greg Pettis, SCAG President. “Each has contributed significantly to making Southern California such an extraordinary region and upholding SCAG’s principles of mobility, economic advancement, sustainability and improving quality of life.”

Also, the County of San Bernardino and San Bernardino Associated Governments (SANBAG) were recognized for Achievement in Integrated Planning for collaborating on the Countywide Vision.

The City of Yucaipa received an award for Achievement in Active Transportation for their Historic Uptown Revitalization Program.

Community Vital Signs featured for efforts to engage community in wellness

community vital signsWorking to achieve health and well being for San Bernardino County residents is a priority for Community Vital Signs, a health improvement effort developed through the collaboration of county residents, community organizations and government agencies.

The Community Vital Signs initiative addresses the Wellness Element of the Countywide Vision.  It sets evidence-based goals and priorities that align and use our resources to improve the overall health and well-being of the county’s residents.

In April, Community Vital Signs was featured in the County Health Rankings & Roadmaps Community Spotlight. County Health Rankings & Roadmaps is collaboration between the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute. The website feature highlights Community Vital Signs’ efforts to engage the community in working toward wellness.

The Community Spotlight can be viewed at http://www.countyhealthrankings.org/community-spotlights/community-engages-san-bernardino-county-ca-assessment.

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