YouthBuild Grants Money To Vinton Co. Alternative Education Plan

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An alternative education plan in Vinton County will use grant money to help area teens deemed at-risk of dropping out.

Sojourners Care Network in McArthur received $900,000 from YouthBuild, a branch of the US Department of Labor.

The Sojourners program is designed to provide classroom instruction and occupational skills to youth ages 16 to 24.

Marcus Games, co-executive director for Sojourners, says he wants the students to gain independence.

"When they leave our program they're either furthering their higher education and/or they are starting a job at a certain wage level that gives them a real opportunity for self-sufficiency," says Games.

Games says students can graduate through their local high school and still participate in the program by receiving job training.

One of the Sojourners programs teaches youth construction and community service by rebuilding homes for low-income families.

Games says he wants to help youth struggling in school.

"We hope to serve over 50 young people across southeast Ohio who primarily have had challenges being successful in traditional school settings," says Games.

The program was one of six statewide to receive the funding.