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YouthPort Partners With CR School District

CEDAR RAPIDS, IA (CBS2/FOX28) In Cedar Rapids, local non-profit groups are finding a unique way to work together to help local students. Three different groups are coming together to create an umbrella group called YouthPort.

"To be identified as YouthPort is powerful because people will say, "Oh yeah, I know YouthPort, I've worked with that group, said Tanager Place Executive Director Okpara Rice.

YouthPort is actually just the name for the combined efforts of the Young Parents Network, the Boys and Girls Club and Tanager Place. Each offers unique services to different age groups. By working together, it becomes a lot easier for families to consistently get the help they need even as they get older.

"If they're leaving our services, for example, because they're entering Kindergarten, what an opportunity to become involved with the Boys and Girls Club, said Young Parents Network Executive Director Brian Stutzman.

The partner groups say it fills the gaps in their care that arise just because one group cant be an expert in everything.

"It's great because then we can concentrate on the things that we do best and allow them to concentrate on the things that they do best and then in the end, our families all benefit, said Boys and Girls Club Executive Director John Tursi.

The partnership between YouthPort and the Cedar Rapids School District not only cuts down on facilities cost, but also makes it even easier for families to get involved.

"For me it was the ultimate in what can happen for school and community agencies, said the Associate Director of the Polk Alternative Education Center Deb Scott.

"Whether you need a high level of help or you just want to be a part of the neighborhood, this is place where you can land, said Stutzman.
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