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Latino Leadership Grants Awarded

March 16, 2000|KATIE COOPER

Grants totaling $100,000 for programs encouraging leadership in the Latino community were handed out at a reception Wednesday in Oxnard.

Ten nonprofit and school-based groups received the grants from the Ventura County Community Foundation's Destino 2000: Hispanic Legacy Fund. The fund was created to inspire Latino youth across Ventura County to participate in civic affairs and train them to take leadership roles.

El Centrito de la Colonia, which targets the low-income community of La Colonia and downtown Oxnard, received $12,500 for two programs that help young people develop leadership, decision-making and planning skills.

Future Leaders of America was awarded $15,000 for its Master Achievers Project that motivates ninth- and 10th-graders to participate in extracurricular activities and encourages teamwork.

Low-income teens in the east county will receive career training under a $5,000 grant to Many Mansions, a Thousand Oaks-based nonprofit housing corporation that rehabilitates apartment houses for low-income families. Teens will learn resume-writing and interviewing skills and hear from Latinos who are established in their professions.

Schools that received grants include Fillmore High School, which was awarded $14,000 for its Business/Leadership Career Pathway Program. The project helps students improve their interpersonal skills and gain a better understanding of business. Students will also participate in job shadowing and internships.

Santa Paula High School received $18,000 to establish scholarships for seniors planning to attend a university. The money also will serve as a matching grant for additional funds from the agriculture industry.

Other groups awarded grants were the Boys & Girls Club of Santa Clara Valley--$11,500; Moorpark Unified School District--$10,400; Ocean View School District--$9,550; Rio School District-- $1,500; and Ventura County Leadership Academy--$2,550.

Destino 2000, established as an endowment in 1996, operates under the guidance of the foundation and focuses on the needs of the Latino community. This year's grants were supported by a $75,000 contribution from Haas Automation of Oxnard and a $25,000 gift from the James Irvine Foundation.

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