September 27, 2017
Dear Voyager Families,
Let’s take a quick moment away from the eye-popping scenery to look at what’s going on at Voyager for the next month. Indeed, the speed at which the trees and weather change inspires us to relish these wonderful, fleeting moments with our children. And because Voyager is involved with so many programs involving youth, please bear with me as I update you on all of them.
After School Enrichment Program:
Speaking of change, we are changing our route from the school to Voyager the alleyway between Charles and Clinton to the Sherman Street sidewalk, turning onto N. Cora. Talk about change!—kudos to the completion of the streetscape that affords us a paved path from the school to our door, saving us from the mud and snow that chills our toes. Beginning October 2nd, we will use the new route.
The fall calendar is available. This month, we continue exploring the world around us in real time by checking out gourds, raptors, and sand hill cranes, as well as defining chemical vs. physical change. As in the past, Voyager offers full day programming when school is out Monday through Thursday, excepting holidays. This makes Thursday, October 19th, our first full day. Be sure to pack a swimsuit and towel because we are going to the Montrose Community Rec Center. You can purchase the day from the catalog under After School Programs, or call or come by the office to register. The $40 rate includes the cost of activities and transportation. If you register before October 12th, you can receive 15% off by entering EARLY in the promo code box. If no one is registered before October 13th, we will be closed for the 19th. Looking ahead, Voyager will be closed the week after Christmas but open Tuesday, January 2nd, through Monday, January 8th.
The Free Teen Center for seventh graders and up will also be closed the first week of Christmas break and open the second from 11 to 5:30, as it is always open after school and in conjunction with the elementary program. Basecamp is available because of a block grant from the Office of Behavioral Health. Check out the annual report here.
In the schools:
The above grant also includes prevention programming in the schools. Voyager is collaborating with Ouray and Ridgway Middle Schools to bring Positive Action to the seventh-grade health classes. This curriculum replaces the All Stars curriculum we have provided in the past. Alex Durham will be teaching this in Ouray, and Shawnn Row in Ridgway. Alex Durham will also be facilitating Sources of Strength Suicide Prevention in both schools. Voyager continues to collaborate with Juvenile Diversion to bring Boys’ and Girls’ Lunch Groups to Ouray and Ridgway seventh and eighth graders. Ridgway meets through the fall and Ouray lunches start in early spring. Students must have signed permission to attend.
In the Community:
Under the office of Ouray County Public Health, Voyager has entered its second year facilitating a Communities that Care grant. In a nutshell, the grant implements a Social Development Strategy, meaning that, by nurturing individual characteristics and providing opportunities, skills, and recognition for youth, we build bonds that start with healthy beliefs and clear standards and reach healthy behaviors for youth. With CTC funds, we are excited to present “Start the Conversation” at the Sherbino Theater on Tuesday, October 17th, from 6:30 to 8:30. It is a free workshop designed to empower parents and adults to have better and lasting conversations with young people. It’s not about saying the right or wrong thing, but creating the space to start the conversation. Dinner and childcare are provided for this free event. If you are interested in getting involved with CTC, please contact Lisa Thomason.
As you may have heard, Voyager is celebrating 20 years of youth enrichment by launching a capital campaign to acquire a permanent site. The 20th Anniversary Banquet and auction was a successful launchpad, and we are grateful to those who donated, volunteered, and showed up. There are two art pieces that did not meet minimum bids still available at the Voyager. While 88% of our monthly rent and utilities is paid by the above-mentioned grants, we know that grants are not guarantees. Just as Voyager needs the community, so does the community need Voyager. If you would like to donate or join the capital campaign subcommittee, please contact Lisa Thomason.
Callout for Common Sense
Have you ever looked backed at the time when you were first living on your own or got your first real job and wished someone had taught you practical life skills? Or, have you ever considered hiring a young adult and felt that they might have the specific skills for the job, but not know general job etiquette? Voyager is putting together a series of coaching sessions geared toward high school juniors and seniors to prepare them with practical skills to navigate adulthood. Things like, how to fill out FAFSA and other forms, how to manage a budget and build credit, how to eat healthy on a budget and with limited storage, how to clean, iron, and mend clothes, how to write a resume, fill out an application, and ace a job interview, and anything else you think someone navigating young adulthood might need to know. This is a call for volunteers who would like to give a simple skills presentation lasting about 90 minutes (presentation, practice, coaching). If you are interested in giving a presentation or know someone who would serve our teens well with a presentation, please contact Danelle Hughes Norman.
Thanks for bearing with me through this longer than usual newsletter.
Danelle Hughes Norman