OCWCOG Receives United Way Funding to Break Cycle of Childhood Poverty in Benton County

OCWCOG’s Foster Grandparent Program received a $19,590 grant through the United Way of Benton & Lincoln Counties for its Breaking the Cycle of Childhood Poverty funding cycle in Benton County. The funding will support the Foster Grandparent Program’s English Language Learner Collaboration, a collaboration between OCWCOG’s Foster Grandparent Program, the Boys and Girls Club of Corvallis, Casa Latinos Unidos de Benton County, and Strengthening Rural Families.

“OCWCOG is proud to partner with the United Way of Benton & Lincoln Counties on this important program – supporting long-term preventative work to alleviate inter-generational poverty in our communities,” said OCWCOG Executive Director Fred Abousleman. “Our Foster Grandparent Program brings together our senior volunteers and community partners to support academic readiness and support for local children during school transitions, as well as increasing financial knowledge for their families. We’re pleased of the success of the Foster Grandparent Program to date and look forward to its continued success with the United Way’s partnership.”

The Foster Grandparent Program focuses on schools and after-school programs within Benton County that hold the highest rates of low-income, English Language Learning students. The Program recruits, trains, and matches foster grandparents with students to increase individualized reading practice, helping students improve fluency of the English language. The Collaboration will also offer financial literacy trainings in English/Spanish this coming year, including a tax preparation seminar for local Spanish-speaking families.

“The United Way is excited about partnering with OCWCOG, an organization that touches, equips, and changes so many lives for the better throughout Benton County,” said United Way Community Impact Director Tina Mills. “Empowering bilingual youth through support and mentoring in school by community volunteers can truly break the cycle of childhood poverty.”

The OCWCOG’s Foster Grandparent Program, a program of the Corporation for National and Community Service, is currently recruiting volunteers ages 55+ in Benton County. Volunteers will receive specialized English Language Learning tutor training, a tax-exempt stipend, and meal and mileage reimbursements for their volunteer service.

For more information, contact Alicia Lucke at 541-924-8440.