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Hartford’s youth services groups to get $1.8 million in UNITY grants

Mixed race teenage girl playing the violin
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With the awarding of $1.8 million to over 60 groups providing youth services across the Hartford, Mayor Luke Bronin said, “These are our grants to youth service organizations throughout our community who are doing the vital work of helping our young people reconnect, heal, recover and just have fun after everything they’ve been through over the last couple of years during the pandemic."

Mayor Luke Bronin has announced that Hartford will award $1.8 million to over 60 groups providing youth services across the city.

Recipients of the Understanding the Needs in Today’s Youth (UNITY) grants offer a variety of programs from sports, music and art to reading and nutrition.

Bronin said this round of funding, which comes from the federal American Rescue Plan, will serve more than 9,000 young people.

“These are our grants to youth service organizations throughout our community who are doing the vital work of helping our young people reconnect, heal, recover and just have fun after everything they’ve been through over the last couple of years during the pandemic,” Bronin said.

One of the grantees is Act Up Theater. Founder and CEO Faithlyn Johnson said this grant will allow the organization to bring the arts to more schools to have meaningful conversations about issues that have come to the forefront during the pandemic.

“We created these amazing workshops around resilience, leadership, Black Lives Matter, all these wrapped within the arts so that classrooms are able to have these really challenging conversations and utilize the arts to do so,” Johnson said.

Johnson said the additional funding will help them activate programming year-round, in addition to the summer programs already underway.

Brenda León is a corps member with Report for America, a national service program that places journalists into local newsrooms. Brenda covers the Latino/a, Latinx community with an emphasis on wealth-based disparities in health, education and criminal justice.

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