Archive | Youth

Champion of Children Award Recipients Named

HARTFORD — The Center for Children’s Advocacy has named Connecticut’s 2018 Champion of Children Award Recipients, to be honored at the Center’s annual Spring for Kids event at Infinity Hall, Hartford on May 8, 2018.

This year’s Champion of Children awards go to Fran Rabinowitz, Executive Director of the Connecticut Association of Public School Superintendents; and Abdul-Rahmaan I. Muhammad, Executive Director of My People Clinical Services.

Fran Rabinowitz has been a dedicated and respected Connecticut educational leader for over 30 years. Prior to her appointment at CAPSS, she served Associate Commissioner of Education for the State of Connecticut, Superintendent of Hamden Public Schools, and Interim Superintendent of Bridgeport Public Schools.

Abdul-Rahmann Muhammad leads My People Clinical Services, a community-based social service organization that helps Hartford-area youth and families rebuild their lives. Services include therapeutic support and crisis intervention, helping youth overcome the impact of family disruption, domestic violence, substance abuse and other barriers to health and safety.

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American Legion to Hold Annual Youth Week

MIDDLETOWN —  The American Legion  will hold its annual state police youth week this July in Meriden.

State Police Youth Week  is a law enforcement practicum for high school students completing their junior year in 2018 at an accredited high school. SPYW will be held at the Connecticut State Police Training Academy in Meriden from July 8 to July 14. 

Organizers said the program offers insight into the training, duties and expectations of law enforcement officers. It also provides realistic experience, patterned after recruit training at the Connecticut State Police Academy and affords students considering a law enforcement career the opportunity to gain knowledge of the professional life of a police officer. 

SPYW cadets will participate in a variety of mentally and physically demanding instructional sessions, including patrol techniques, Connecticut criminal and motor vehicle laws, criminal and accident investigation, firearms safety and training, water safety training, team-building and confidence training, defensive driving techniques, and other law enforcement skill training. 

Cadets will experience the daily activities of recruit training, including the 5:15 a.m. reveille wake up call, physical conditioning, inspection of quarters, and participation in assigned details. 

Completed applications, including personal statements, recommendations and $125.00 fee, must be received by April 23, 2018.  

Selection date this year will be May 2, 2018. If you have not heard anything by the second week of May please contact the American Legion at 860-296-0719.

Visit for more information and application or contact your high school guidance counselor, school resource officer, local post of the American Legion or the American Legion Department Treasurer at 860-296-0719.

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Hartford Police Arrest Windsor Street Shooter

HARTFORD — Hartford Police arrested a local man who alleged fired shots on Windsor Street Thursday morning.

Police arrested Johnathan Smith, 24, of 195 Sigourney St. in Hartford for carrying a pistol without a permit, having weapons in a car, first degree attempted assault, reckless endangerment, unlawful discharge, and possession of a stolen firearm. The firearm was stolen from South Hadley, MA.

According to report, police responded to shots fired at 729 Windsor St. at 11:54 a.m. Thursday.

There were no victims.

However, witnesses reported that a gold Infinity pulled up to a parked black Lexus and the occupant of the gold Infinity shot at the black Lexus. Both cars then fled the scene.

While traveling south on Main Street Thursday, the suspect was spotted by a police officer . The suspect was stopped and removed from his car. Officers recovered the stolen firearm.

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Hartford Mayor to Convene Meeting on Spiked Car Accidents

HARTFORD —  Mayor Luke Bronin will convene a meeting on Thursday with regional and state leaders to discuss the recent spike in car accidents and to call for a coordinated strategy to reduce car thefts by juveniles and young adults, which have been a factor in a number of fatal or serious crashes.


“There’s been a disturbing spike in vehicle crashes with fatalities or serious injuries, even as we’ve had fewer accidents overall in Hartford.  We’re particularly concerned about the role that both drugs and stolen vehicles are playing in these tragic incidents,” Bronin said.  “Our Police Department is working hard to make our streets safer through increased speed and DUI enforcement, but we need to work together as a region and as a State to crack down on car thefts.”

Bronin also referred to the number of cars stolen from West Hartford and New Britain that were involved in crashes in Hartford. These car thefts, he said, comprised of a regional problem that demands close coordination between towns, as well as with the State Police and with State and federal prosecutors.

According to the Hartford Police Department,  alcohol or other drugs played a role in at least half of the fatal accidents this year, and in two cases the vehicles involved were stolen.

In response to fatalities in January, the city increased its traffic enforcement this month, adding an additional roving DUI patrol and an additional speed enforcement patrol each weekend.  The State Department of Transportation has also agreed to accelerate three $50,000 traffic-related grants the City was expecting this year, which will pay for additional details focused on speed enforcement, distracted driving, and “Click It or Ticket.”

The City will receive the first of those grants, for speed enforcement, in March.


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Hartford Selected for Bloomberg Challenge Grant

HARTFORD — Hartford was one of 35 Champion Cities recently selected  as a finalist in the 2018 U.S. Mayors Challenge, a nationwide competition by Bloomberg Philanthropies that encourages city leaders to pursue bold, inventive ideas that confront the toughest problems cities face.

In October, four cities will receive $1 million awards and one will receive a grand prize of $5 million to bring their ideas to life.

Hartford’s proposal, Alleviating Child Trauma in Our Neighborhoods, uses the City’s ShotSpotter technology to ensure that educators, early childhood professionals, and youth support organizations are able to recognize and respond in real time when a child has been exposed to the trauma of gun violence.

“In too many communities around the country, young people who are exposed to the trauma of gun violence in their neighborhoods never get the support, treatment, or even the acknowledgement that they need,” said Mayor Luke Bronin.  “Our proposal was designed to help provide timely support and assistance to kids exposed to gun violence in our own community.

The city will work with stakeholders including Hartford Public Schools, the Hartford Police Department, and the Village for Families and Children to further develop the plan, Bronin said.

Research shows that more than 76 percent of youth who are exposed to gun violence nationally are never referred to care, and traumatic stress from that exposure can result in persistent emotional and cognitive damage.

The city’s proposal was selected from a pool of more than 320 applications.  Hartford now advances to the six-month “Test, Learn, and Adapt” phase of the competition. Cities will refine their ideas during this process with up to $100,000, as well as personalized support from innovation experts, to test and begin building support for their urban innovations and submit a new application in August 2018.

Former New York City Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg is the founder of Bloomberg Philanthropies.

For more information, visit and @BloombergCities on Twitter and Instagram.

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Local Station Receives Workforce Grant

HARTFORD — The Corporation for Public Broadcasting recently announced a grant to Connecticut Public for the American Graduate: Getting to Work initiative to help advance education and career readiness locally.

With the $199,394 grant, the local station will work with partners in Connecticut to assess workforce challenges and opportunities, and produce content focused on the essential skills needed for students and workers to succeed in the job markets of today and tomorrow, officials said.

“Connecticut Public looks forward to working hand-in-hand with community partners from across the state in order to draw attention to and address the needs of Connecticut’s changing workforce,” said Connecticut Public’s President and CEO Jerry Franklin. “We believe the American Graduate initiative underscores our commitment to both community engagement and education, and we are pleased to be part of this national effort.”

The new grants represent the next phase of public media’s successful American Graduate initiative, which was launched in 2011 to address the nation’s dropout rate. During the past six years, public media stations across the country forged community connections and innovative partnerships to help improve student outcomes – substantially contributing to an increase in the national high school graduation rate to an all-time high of 84 percent.

“The American Graduate initiative attracted local business and community leader support and engagement by focusing on keeping young people on the path to success in school and life,” said Pat Harrison, CPB President and CEO. “All Americans want our young people to be prepared to fill jobs that currently are unfilled because of a skills gap.”

Connecticut Public is one of 19 stations receiving these American Graduate grants as part of the national effort. The organization will work with a variety of community partners in workforce and youth development as well as secondary and higher education to shape programming and foster engagement. Connecticut Public will produce content for Connecticut Public Television and Connecticut Public Radio that draws statewide attention to the needs of Connecticut’s workforce and the skills gap in our state.

A series of community events – including a televised town hall-style forum and youth networking events with area employers in Hartford and New Haven – will extend the impact of on-air and online content through continued dialogue and engagement.

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Discovery Museum Kicks off Black History Month

BRIDGEPORT — hundreds of kids and families recently turned out for The Discovery Museum’s fifth annual Aerospace Day, which serves as a kick-off event for Black History Month.

The next event is scheduled for Feb. 10. On “Maker Day”, visitors will make things out of raw materials. Organizers said it’s a great opportunity to excite that left-hand side of the brain, and “to spark creativity right here at The Discovery Museum.

Attendees learned valuable information about several of scientists – including Bridgeport’s Lewis Latimer – while experiencing family fun with interactive exhibits spanning from parachute making to wind tunnels.

“It’s a great way for people of all ages to find out about the amazing technology that exists right in their backyard, especially in the aerospace industry,” said The Discovery Museum’s Executive Director Bill Finch.

There will also be several exhibits dedicated to the aerospace industry. One presentation, sponsored by Sikorsky, features the building of airfoils – any surface, as a wing, aileron, or stabilizer, designed to aid in lifting or controlling an aircraft by making use of the air currents through which it moves – followed by testing them in the wind tunnel.

Another exhibit, sponsored by Sacred Heart University, gives kids an opportunity to assemble Black History Coloring Books, featuring seven innovators and leaders that have their work featured in stations throughout the museum.

Also, Remax provided an indoor balloon experience, and volunteers from Jack and Jill of Eastern Fairfield County gave kids an opportunity to build their parachutes, followed by dropping them from the upper level of the museum down to the lobby, while trying to hit a target.

Kim Bowen, CEO, and CFO of Specialty Cable Corporation, said that science education like that provided at The Discovery Museum during Aerospace Day is so critical to preparing kids for the science and engineering jobs of tomorrow.

“The Discovery Museum is a great resource for Connecticut. We need more Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math education,” said Bowen. “Now more than ever we need our citizens to understand science and our students to become excited about careers in these fields. We make high tech components for aerospace; medical and industrial customers and we are always looking to expose our youth to the jobs of the future.”

Visitors to the Museum to Aerospace Day received a $1 off the regular admission thanks to a gift from Specialty.

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Hartford Police Seek Stabbing Suspect

HARTFORD —  Hartford Police are still investigating the death of a Hartford man who was stabbed before his car crashed on Main Street.

The man, Kemar Bennet, 29, of 950 Asylum Ave., Apt 10, died from injuries sustained after a fight on Tuesday, police said.

According to police, officers responded to car accident at about 2:a.m. on  Saturday at the Sunset Café at 3229 Main St. After the fight by an unknown man in the parking lot at Sunset Café., Bennet got in his car and began driving.

He lost consciousness behind the wheel before it crashed into a light pole at 2995 Main St.

Police are working to identify the suspect who fled after stabbing Bennet.

Three other victims of the crash suffered injuries and were taken to Hartford Hospital and St. Francis.

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Car Chase Leads to Lane Closings on I-91

HARTFORD — A police chase that began in Massachusetts and injured at least one person caused lane closings on I-91.

State Police said the two lanes of I-91 south near exit 49  are still closed because of a crash at the end of a police chase that began in Springfield early Thursday.

At least one person was seriously injured in the crash, police said

Troopers from the Massachusetts State Police and Springfield officers were involved in the pursuit, police said.

Connecticut state troopers responded to scene.

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Asian Host First Culture Night

HARTFORD — The Asian American Student Association at Trinity College hosted the first Intercollegiate Asian American Culture Night in the Admissions Grand Room.

In addition to the Trinity students who hosted the event in November, the conference welcomed Asian culture clubs from the University of Connecticut, Eastern Connecticut State University, Connecticut College, and Wesleyan University.

Members of the Trinity College Asian American Student Association executive board with Trinity College President Joanne Berger-Sweeney

Members of the Trinity College Asian American Student Association executive board with Trinity College President Joanne Berger-Sweeney

Each club brought food to share with the group, and offered introductions and presentations as the students got to know one another. “The energy was very high, and the enthusiasm for future events such as this was very apparent,” said Ethan Yang, the first-year representative for Trinity’s AASA and one of the conference organizers. “During the open microphone session, many people passionately discussed issues relating to the Asian American identity, including conflicts with tradition, acceptance, fitting in, and being criticized for not looking Asian.”

The event organizers believe that this was the first step toward forming a coalition to unite Asian American culture clubs from colleges across Connecticut. The organization aims to encourage further collaboration and communication amongst its member clubs.

“My co-host Hamna Tariq and I had the privilege of hosting one of the most successful and productive AASA events ever,” Yang said. “Overall, this event was an unprecedented and historic step that has created momentum that will surely change the state of Connecticut for the collegiate Asian American, and hopefully all cultures.”

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