It's obvious to many at-risk youth on St. Croix that their future prospects are bleak. After all, they're living in poverty, doing poorly in school, and lack positive role models and the tools to make good decisions. It's no wonder so many of these youth give up and turn to risky behaviors. What have they got to lose? To help them turn their lives around, a holistic approach is needed. Programs that address just one or two of the many issues they face are not likely to succeed.
Project Promise has created an intensive, holistic, multi-year after-school program that has already proven successful. We know it could be even more successful, and provide even more services to the community, if it could operate out of its own building. The good news is, we have the building-a 2,200 square foot facility in downtown Christiansted. The challenge is that the building needs extensive renovations in order to be habitable.
We were given an incredible opportunity to start rehabbing this building. Thanks to many generous donations and a great deal of volunteer labor, our building rehab project has already come a very long way. We've replaced the roof, rebuilt the second floor, framed out all of the walls, built the interior and exterior stairs, and much more. Even with all this progress, though, we still need more assistance to finish the building.
This building will serve as a community center and allow for both growth and stability for Project Promise's programming. The finished space will include classrooms, a computer lab, a multi-purpose room, office space, a full kitchen, a laundry center for the kids and their families to use and a small garden. The building will house our flagship Caterpillar Program and also enable us to begin offering programming on the weekends for additional St. Croix youth.