SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB) — Three local programs, which aim to help area youth, are set to receive grants from the Hampden County D.A.’s office.
Hampden County District Attorney Mark Mastroianni announced Monday that the Boys and Girls Club of Holyoke, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Hampden County, and The Gray House are each receiving a grant of $10,000 as part of the Drug Forfeiture Grant Program.
The program is a fund made up of money and property that was ordered forfeited following drug offense convictions that involved the sale, production, or distribution of narcotics.
According to Mastroianni’s office, the Boys and Girls Club will use their funding to support the organization’s youth membership programs, which provide after-school programs that help encourage children to stay in school and resist gang recruitment and drug use.
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Hampden County will use its grant for their community-based mentoring program. The program aims to prevent drug and alcohol abuse and involvement in other crime, and increase academic performance and attendance through one-to-one long-term mentoring between a youth and an adult.
Mastroianni’s office adds that The Gray House in Springfield will put their funding towards their kids club. The club helps students that are struggling academically and engages them in activities that help improve reading, math, writing, and science skills. Through that work, the hope is to prevent frustration and discouragement towards school, which can lead to gang involvement and drug use.
Representatives from all three groups will receive their grants during a ceremony Tuesday in Springfield.