Friday, July 10, 2009

Handoff ceremony to celebrate Skrappy’s independence

Media, government officials and the public are invited to a handoff ceremony to celebrate Skrappy’s youth center realizing its long-held dream of independence.

Skrappy’s will have an open house from 2-4 p.m. Thursday, July 16, at its new location at 191 E. Toole. The hand off ceremony will take place at 3 p.m. (Please park at the train depot or in the pay lot across Toole.)

Skrappy’s was founded in 1995 by parents Kathy and Bill Wooldridge, along with youth involved in underground punk bands in Tucson. Since 2002, Skrappy’s has been a program of Our Family Services, a Tucson-based social services agency that provides counseling, education, housing, mediation and help for people in crisis.

As of July 1, the Skrappy’s center is operated by the Tucson Youth Collective, a community group of longtime Skrappy’s youth volunteers and adults who are forming their own nonprofit corporation. President of the Board of Directors of TYC is Joyce Serido, a University of Arizona researcher.

“This is something Kathy and the kids have wanted for a long time,’’ said Our Family Executive Director Sue Krahe. “We are happy to have supported this program and nurtured these young people long enough for them to be ready to step up and leave the nest. We’re proud of them and wish them every success.”

Currently, Skrappy’s offers free classes in sewing and clothing design, breakdancing, art and community involvement from 3-6 p.m. Tuesday-Friday. They also are working on community mapping projects in collaboration with the University of Arizona.

The center’s nationally recognized positive youth development partnerships with the UA will continue under the guidance of Dr. Lynne M. Borden of the Norton School of Family and Consumer Sciences.

Our Family will continue to collaborate with Skrappy’s through its other services to youth and families.

Skrappy’s is planning a grand opening for later this year when all programming and facilities in the new building are fully operational.


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