Youngstown Lifeguard Academy expands footprint from the Mahoning Valley to the Nation

Top Quote The Youngstown Lifeguard Academy has gone from a local program to save the last remaining pool in the city of Youngstown to being invited to two national conference in a short three year period. Even COVID-19 couldn't stop this small non-profit from its mission to engage inner-city youth to become the solution for a problem that has been nagging other communities across the country. Lifeguards! End Quote
  • Youngstown-Warren, OH (1888PressRelease) November 07, 2022 - Youngstown, Ohio The Youngstown Lifeguard Academy is a Community, Economic, Leadership, Youth and Workforce Development Program.

    1. The Academy has received final approval to start as a State Demonstration Project for the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services. 40 young people from Mahoning and Trumbull Counties are being recruited for the 2022-2023 Class. Classes are scheduled to start December 17, 2022, after an Orientation. Classes will be held at the downtown YMCA. The agreement is a $596,363.35 cost-reimbursement in which the officials of the Academy is still seeking to match the agreement dollar for dollar.

    If the Academy receives the necessary support from city and county government from the American Rescue Plans funds. We will become the national model for engaging “At-risk” and “Underserved” young people 15-24 years old.

    Opposite of what is being stated, we are not training young people to leave the city or the Mahoning Valley. We are preparing them for life right now here in Youngstown to serve their community. We are preparing them to address their deficits and use their desire to be the best that will serve as a foundation to build a life for themselves, their future families and community.

    If we are successfully, we will create a pipeline for employment for our area Parks and Recreations throughout the valley for our young people. If we are successful, we will create a pipeline for our state department of Natural Resources, the U.S. Department of the Interior, Forestry and Park Services.

    If we are successful, we will create a pipeline for new First Responders, here in the city of Youngstown EMS, Fire and Police.

    "If we are successful, every young person who serve as a member of the Youngstown Lifeguard Academy will benefit from rigorous training and experiential learning, that will translate in continuous training and learning, which will mean employment and advancement in whatever job they may land. This city will be the classroom from which will lead the nation in demonstrating how best to prepare our youth.," stated Founder, Hon. Kevin Tarpley."

    2. The Academy has presented at the National Parks and Recreation Association annual conference on September 19, 2022. The professional leaders of the 6000-member organization that attended our presentation has declared the Youngstown Lifeguard Academy a model that they would like to replicate in their community; city, county and even some state agencies that operate aquatic facilities to address the national Lifeguard crisis. There are currently 20 interested entities from across the country they would like to establish their own Lifeguard Academy for their communities. This is the result of a presentation made by Academy members in partnership with former Youngstown Parks and Recreation Director, Dawn Turnage.

    This represents a potential $2.7 million dollars that will flow through this city, this county in the first year of implementation of our Technical Assistance efforts for these entities. We have been invited back for next year’s conference to present once again.

    3. The Academy will create new jobs opportunities because of the need to provide technical assistance around the country. Jobs for both youth experts and adults. Our youth will earn compensation in the form of $450.00 per day. They will advise adult leaders on the characteristics of a successful program that made the difference for them, advise youth leaders selected to participate and those who become leaders of their local Academy of what to expect, their roles as Academy and community youth leaders.
    The Academy is building a national consultant team as we speak to ready them to meet this demand for 2024. The Academy will have one Organizational, Aquatic and Youth Specialist on each Technical Assistance Team.

    "This will further lead to state and national conferences that will benefit this city and the community in the form of payroll and various taxes required to be pay in the daily of operations of businesses that we will need to make these services available to those who are seeking our guidance.," said Mr. Tarpley.

    4. The Youngstown Lifeguard Academy will present at the National Association of Workforce Development Professionals; Youth Symposium on November 14 -17 regarding the opportunities and benefits for young people from inner-cities.

    So, you can see that the Academy has some exciting opportunities for any young person who is up to the challenge, sacrifice, discipline and ready to grow as fast as they are willing to work and think outside of the traditional box of being a teenager and ready to assume the role of an adult. It is 20 precent physical and 80 percent mental. That is where the real growth must take place.

    5. Going forward, the Academy will establish a “Lifeguard Mutual” Aid program where young people from the Mahoning Valley will have an opportunity to work for Parks and Recreation Departments around the state of Ohio and nationally.

    "We will hope to send 10 of our best to Cincinnati to work for their Recreation Commission. The Academy will seek to secure a special signing bonus for those who elect to spend their summer making the new Academy Lifeguard Mutual Aid program a reality," states Tarpley.

    6. The Academy will move its headquarters to downtown Youngstown to be closer to its partner, the downtown YMCA where young people participate in Swim Conditioning and Community Service through the Academy YMCA Leader’s Club. This is dependent on the local support we receive from city and county government at this point.

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