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Communities In Schools helps at-risk youth

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Updated: 9/04/2013 6:56 pm
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Dominic Cummings had a difficult life outside of school.

"Me being the seventh child of eight, I grew up in a low-income home," said Cummings.

These challenges started to affect his school work.

But he says support from Communities In Schools saved his life.

"The same teachers that were there during the day, were the same teachers during the afternoon where I was able to receive that additional support," said Cummings.

The program is hoping to help students who have similar obstacles to those Cummings had.

"This year, we are going to serve over 7,800 students in 39 schools," said Interim
Communities In Schools CEO Leon Baxton.

Baxton says this year, there's a new program called Bridge to Success, working with students who are two years or more over their grade level.

"Our goal this year is to work with them intensely by providing home visitation, link the services, working with teachers," said Baxton.

Baxton says they'll also continue to have their four main initiatives -- a literacy program, an after-school teaching program, a mentoring division and an enrichment program.

"Our goal is to eliminate those barriers," said Baxton.

Barriers that were eliminated for Cummings, who now has a career, and spends his spare time volunteering for this program that turned his life around.

"I wanted to be that for someone else, knowing that another caring adult cares about them and what we really want them to achieve," said Cummings.

Baxton tells Action News they get funding for this program through multiple sources in Duval County Public Schools, the United Way of North Florida and other private donors.


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