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University Area CDC’s Prodigy Presents at Polk County Legislative Delegation Meeting

BARTOW, Fla. – (Dec. 18, 2013) – Bree Luckie of the University Area Community Development Corporation’s (UACDC) Prodigy cultural arts program addressed Florida State Legislators during the Polk County Legislative Delegation Meeting Dec. 16. The meeting was held at the Polk County Commission Chambers. 

Bradford explained to the delegation how Prodigy, funded by the Department of Juvenile Justice, delivers life skills such as communication, problem-solving and conflict resolution through performing and visual arts curriculum for at-risk youth ages 7-17. The program prevents youth from going deeper into the juvenile justice system, which in turn saves the state money, improves communities and truly transforms young lives.

Prodigy served 308 Polk County, FL youth in the 2012-2013 grant year. The five Prodigy locations in Polk County include Oasis Community Ministries, Winston Elementary, Fontaine Bills YMCA, Girls, Inc. of Lakeland and the Lakeland Housing Authority. Classes such as visual arts, dance, drums, keyboard and music production provide a meaningful activity after school and on Saturdays. 

Prodigy reached 3,204 youth in the recent grant year through a seven-county region, which includes Hillsborough, Manatee, Sarasota, Polk, Pasco, Pinellas and Orange. Dollar for dollar, Prodigy is one of the lowest costs per youth programs in the state of Florida and has an 89 percent non-recidivism rate. 

Members of the Polk County Legislative Delegation include Senators Denise Grimsley, Darren Soto and Kelli Stargel, as well as Representatives Ben Albritton, Neil Combee, Mike LaRosa, Seth McKeel and John Wood. 

About ProdigyProdigy is a research‐based diversion, intervention, and prevention program that provides a safe arena where at-risk youth ages 7-17 learn communication, problem‐solving and conflict resolution skills through visual and performing arts. Prodigy currently serves more than 3,000 youth in seven West Central Florida counties and is operated by the UACDC in Tampa. For more information about Prodigy, please visit www.transformingyounglives.org.

About UACDCThe University Area Community Development Corporation, Inc. (UACDC) is a 501(c)(3) public/private partnership whose mission is children and family development, crime prevention, and commerce growth. Its primary focus is the redevelopment and sustainability of the at-risk areas surrounding the Tampa campus of the University of South Florida. The UACDC was named nonprofit of the year for public and societal benefit by the Tampa Bay Business Journal in 2011 and 2012. It is headquartered in the University Area Community Center Complex, owned by Hillsborough County and operated by the UACDC, which is located at 14013 North 22nd Street in Tampa. For more information about UACDC, please visit www.uacdc.org or call Dan Jurman at (813) 558-5212 ext. 208.

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