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Resources Unlimited has a 20-year history of unique and successful Youth Motivation & Empowerment “learning through experience” programs conducted in Austin, Texas and Los Angeles.  The Texas based programs include Arts Aware, Total Tennis, Teachers Training for Body/Mind Accelerated Learning and Special Day Self Esteem programsDuring the 1990’s the California Youth Empowerment programs consisted of You Got the Power, weekly classes at Venice High School, Venice Boys & Girls Club, Ocean Park Recreation Center.

Since 2000, the youth programs have incorporated SmartGirl, SmartBoy, Health, Fitness & Fun, and The Garden NOW Network into the motivation and empowerment curriculum.  Garden NOW creates garden programs that cultivate healthy lifestyles, support environmental education, encourage economic opportunity, strengthen individual, group empowerment and promote community unity.


Resources Unlimited Youth Motivation program, Garden NOW was featured as a unique program for "Kids at Risk" on a 30-minute special, FOX TV-channel 11, Los Angeles, on May 6, 2005.

Leo Paniagua is interviewed by Cynthia Gonzales, FOX-TV, channel 11 during the shooting of the Garden NOW gardening program.  Garden NOW has been an extraordinary successful youth motivation program at the Eastside Boys & Girls Club for the past three years.

The Garden NOW Network (GNN), a program of Resources Unlimited Human Development Foundation is in collaboration with Eastside Boys & Girls Club, Health Education Department of LA County, Conservation Corps, Concerned Citizens of South LA, Drew Middle School, The Salvation Army Youth Project, Peace4Kids and People For Parks. GNN promotes environmental education and healthy lifestyles through gardening, tree planting, nutritional and youth empowerment programs.  The Garden Now Network is a community garden model program that can be implemented in other urban areas in Los Angeles and Internationally. 

Garden NOW Growing New Gardens

Young gardeners at the Eastside Boys & Girls Club are outgrowing their garden so the Garden Now Network program is expanding its operation to include two new gardens.  Groundbreaking for the Eastman Elementary School in Union Pacific and Evergreen Elementary School in Boyle Heights gardens is scheduled for September 2005.  RU master gardener Kathryn Clifton is coordinating a team effort with neighborhood youth and families to participate in planting seeds for vegetables, native plants and fruit trees.  Future plans include a Farmer's Market for the East and South Los Angeles areas.  Garden NOW provides kids with an outlet for living a healthy, active life and makes them a part of a team with a positive outlook.

KIDS On Track Garden

Garden NOW is a unique community garden program with gardens in East and South Los Angeles.  Garden NOW is also part of KIDS on Track partnership program with LA City Park's Exposition Park Intergenerational Center (EPICC), beginning winter, 2006. The pilot program will provide a safe, educational, creative, explorative and recreational experience hundreds of elementary youth, grades 3-5. The students are from seven schools surrounding Exposition Park, who will participate during their vacation periods (which are spread throughout the year because of year-around schedules).  The partners in this innovative program include EPICC Center, Kids In Sports, Breakaway Technologies, The California African American Museum, The California Science Center, The Education Consortium of Central Los Angeles, Inner-City Arts, People For Parks and Resources Unlimited.  These partner organizations will provide enhanced academic programs, sports and recreational activities, exposure to the arts and cultural experiences, science and environmental exploration and health & fitness through gardening.  The overall goal of the collaborative partnership is to help build a foundation for kids to be "on-track" to academic excellence, positive social development and a healthy lifestyle. 

YOUTH EMPOWERMENT –“You Got the Power”

SmartGirls and SmartBoys, Youth Empowerment Programs, conducted by Resources Unlimited are exciting weekly teen classes at the Eastside Boys & Girls Club in Los Angeles.  The two separate programs are designed to assist young girls and boys ages 12-17 in building self-esteem, self-confidence and coping skills.  The primary focus of the 12 month program is providing the youth opportunities to develop leadership skills, conflict resolution, positive body image, healthy relationships and to deal with issues concerning with peer pressure, health, school, home and family life.

An important and unique component of the Youth Empowerment programs is the selection of mentors.  Each participant may choose a mentor who will act as a friend and confidant for a period of one year.  Mentors are specially selected young people who have demonstrated an ability to cope positively with peer pressure, school, home and family concerns and have demonstrated leadership in the community.  The youths who have completed the year-long programs receive a Youth Empowerment certificate and are eligible to become mentors. 



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