Citizens’ Review Panel, 2023 Agencies
Orange County’s Citizens’ Review Panel awarded more than $14.3 million to the following local nonprofit agencies to provide critically needed services to area residents:
- New Image Youth Center, Inc.
- Capoeira for Tomorrow, Inc.
- Drums in Recovery, Inc.
- Harbor House of Central Florida, Inc.
- Conductive Education Center of Orlando, Inc.
- 8 Cents in a Jar, Inc.
- Future Leaders of Community Development Corp.
- Center for Independent Living in Central Florida, Inc.
- Fresh Breath International Worship Center, Inc.
- Paving the Way Foundation, Inc.
- Inspired Innovators, Inc.
- Red Verses, Inc.
- Stono Institute for Freedom, Justice and Security
- City Year, Inc.
- Big Brothers Big Sisters, Inc.
- Aspire Health Partners, Inc.
- The IMPACT Outreach Ministry of Central Florida, Inc.
- Central Florida Urban League, Inc.
- Florida Economic Consortium, Inc.
- Center for Change, Inc.
- Stand Up Survivor, Inc.
- Easter Seals Florida, Inc.
- Peer Support Coalition of Florida, Inc.
- ClassyLinks Creative Consultants, Inc.
- BB4U, Inc.
- Passionate Heart Ministries, Inc.
- Beautifully Scarred, Inc.
- SOS by Urbander, Inc.
- S. Hankins-F.A. Johnson Education Foundation, Inc.
While the C.R.P. received recommendations from the Orange County Citizens Safety Task Force, all funding awarded to the above agencies is separate from all funding awarded to the task force.
Citizens’ Review Panel, Revised Fund Distribution Process
As recommended by the task force, the Citizens’ Review Panel (C.R.P.) – which annually distributes county funding for a select group of nonprofits to deliver their services to local citizens – implemented a revised funding strategy for 2023. To create a more equitable process, this revised process entailed ensuring smaller grassroots nonprofits would compete for funding separately from larger agencies with greater resources.
In total, County Commissioners awarded more than $14.3 million over a three-year period to local nonprofit organizations chosen by the C.R.P. Their work will advance a wide range of services, from mental health to literacy to physical activity and wellness.
A total of 32 nonprofit agencies will be awarded funding to establish 61 separate programs in 2023. Largely due to the revised funding strategy, 14 of these nonprofit agencies have not previously received funding from the C.R.P. Of the first time C.R.P. awarded agencies, 12 are small scale organizations.
These agencies include the following organizations.
- Beautifully Scarred, Inc. - aims to empower and inspire girls of diverse backgrounds to prevent/reduce delinquent behavior, prevent anti-social behaviors and promote a positive reduction in overall risk factors for youth. This will be accomplished through self-care workshops, career development opportunities and group mentorship programming.
- Paving The Way Foundation - Paving the Way Foundation will offer programming geared towards protecting children from human trafficking. Programs give children, parents and educators insight into such concepts as grooming, online enticement, and support services, among others.
- SOS by Urbander, Inc. will partner with So You Want Your Name in Lights to provide an arts-focused, crime-prevention project designed to encourage 40 diverse, at-risk, under-served, under-represented youth populations (ages 12-17) with making right choices while developing character, confidence, leadership, discipline, self-esteem, and positive life-skills. The objective is to keep youth out of trouble, improve behaviors, and reduce juvenile delinquency through interactive workshops which include financial literacy/budgeting, entrepreneurship, healthy wellness, podcasting, radio broadcasting, and life-social skills/etiquette training activities that are non-duplicated in public schools' settings.
Orange County Community Center Youth Programs
The Board formally approved a partnership with Stop the Violence and Embrace, Inc. – a nonprofit community service organization – to provide mentorship programs for youth within three of Orange County’s community centers. Overseen by the Community Action Division, the community centers offer county residents with a wide range of services, including job training, senior resources, and home-energy efficiency assistance.
Stop the Violence and Embrace will offer programs and projects that help to redirect the lives of at-risk youth and young adults ages 14 to 24. This programming includes employment preparedness and placement, tutoring, GED support, computer skills training, life-skills training, conflict-thinking training, peer support groups, and mentorship.
Other Orange County Citizens Safety Task Force Stories
The following programs and services are key recommendations of the task force.
Credible Messenger Program
The work of the Orange County Credible Messengers is ongoing in local communities. Credible Messengers are “streetwise” individuals who serve as mentors for youth within underserved and disenfranchised communities. Orange County is the first in Florida to implement the Credible Messenger Program. It has proven effective at lowering youth violence and recidivism rates in several major U.S. cities, including New York and Washington D.C.
Adult Civil Citation Diversion Program
The Adult Civil Citation Diversion Program is preparing to launch within all law enforcement agencies in Orange and Osceola Counties. The pre-arrest diversion program affords certain adults who fulfill specified intervention and community service obligations the opportunity to avoid an arrest record. To date, more than 60 referrals have been reported. Last year, the State Attorney’s Office launched the pilot program in the Ninth Judicial District.
Orange County Community Ambassador
After an extensive regional search, Patricia Rumph was recently selected as Orange County’s inaugural Community Ambassador. In her new role, Rumph spearheads efforts to reduce gun violence and violent crime and serves as a liaison between law enforcement agencies and the citizens they serve. An Orange County native, Rumph has served on the Orange County Sheriff Citizen Advisory Committee and the Florida Council on Crime and Delinquency, among numerous other relevant positions.
Capacity Building Seminar Program
Conducted by business faculty at Rollins College, this seminar series works to strengthen internal operations for small, local nonprofits who are receiving funding from Orange County. The program works to ensure county taxpayers receive premium return on investment through the County’s grant funding as well as assists local nonprofits to thrive in their business practices.