The latest news...
Check this page often for progress updates for the Strong Foundations, Successful Futures project.
The DEC is taking calls to assist with needs during the COVID-19 pandemic. Please call 440-855-0081.
Farmers to Families Success!
The Dragon Empowerment Center (DEC) in partnership with Country Neighbor, Ashtabula Foundation, the Robert S, Morrison Foundation, and the MFG Foundation will hold the Farmers to Families Dairy and Produce Distribution every other Wednesday starting at 1:00 pm until supplies run out. Watch our Facebook page @foundationsfutures for details and dates. The DEC is a collaborative effort of Ashtabula County Community Action Agency and the Ashtabula Area City Schools.
Dragon Empowerment Center Still Open
While the schools may be closed for now... the Dragon Empowerment Center staff are still working to adddress concersn and connect families to resources. Please contact Jen at 440-855-0081.
DEC Summer Outreach Program
We continue to plan for our Summer Outreach Program, hopefully by then the stay-at-home will be eased. If you would like to assist with tutoring to help our local students keep their learning on track... please contact Jen at 440-855-0081.
School Lunch Distribution Sites
There are free lunches provided to children at these sites in Ashtabula... staff and volunteers are working very hard every day to make sure our kids do not go hungry while our schools are closed.
Dragon Nation Food Drive
The Dragon Nation is awesome! During our recent Food Drive we collected close to 250 items. Thank you to everyone who donated... with your generosity we are able to stock the shelves at the DEC and provide emergency food to our fellow Dragons. Thanks also to Coach Baxter for helping with the arrangements. If you missed the Drive...the DEC is always accepting donations.
DEC Receives Exemplary Program Award
Community Action is so honored to have received an Exemplary Programs Award on behalf of the Dragon Empowerment Center (DEC) for our Community Learning Center initiative! Community Action and the staff of the DEC wish to thank everyone who is involved-- this award really reflects the efforts of the entire team working to address barriers and provide opportunities so that all students, families, and the community can be successful.
Guests on DEC Literacy Project
Guests on DEC continues every Tuesday and Thursday evening at 7:30 pm. Our goal is to help expand vocabulary by exposing kids to more words. The best way to do that is through stories as they use words that may not be used in daily conversation. Tune in and please share the posts. Find the posts at... https://www.facebook.com/foundationsfutures/ Enjoy!
Football Food Drive Challenge!
Let's see which team can bring in the most food items! On Friday, November 1stat the Lakeside vs. Edgewood Football game they will be collecting non-perishable food items to stock the each school's food pantry. Just bring a food item on behalf of your team and we'll see who gets the most!
DEC Community Open House
Join us on Monday, October 28th to learn more about the many services the DEChas to offer. We will have many of our partners on hand to answer your questions and provide information. There will also be FREE FLU shots available! Stop by and check it out!
DEC Welcomes New Intern!
The Dragon Empowerment Center is pleased to welcome Rayna to the team! Rayna is an intern from the Kent State University pursuing her degree in Human Services and she will be helping out at the DEC on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays! Glad to have you on DEC, Rayna!
School Supplies at the DEC!
We are so grateful to the Salvation Army-Ashtabula Unit and Walmart for selecting the DEC to receive the generous donations of school supplies gathered during the Stuff the Bus! We have them at the DEC for any children who are in need of supplies to get them started for the new school year! Contact Jen at 440-855-0081.
Family Play Day
July 22nd the Lakeside Dragon Teams spent the day teaching area youth basic skills in football, basketball, soccer and more! We also had open playground, board games and bubbles! A wonderful day to play outdoors. Many thanks to all who helped and all who attended- Jason, AACS Athletic Director, Lakeside Sport Teams, After School Discovery, Kona Ice, and Ashtabula Insurance (lunch sponsor).
Family Fun Day- Summer Safety Event!
The DEC and RSVP of Ashtabula welcomed summer with a super Family Fun Day! On June 21st, many area organizations gathered to provide summer safety tips and fun activities for area families! A grant through ServeOhio provided for volunteer assistance and free transportation. Thanks to everyone who participated!
Cleveland Dental Institute Clinic
On May 16th the Cleveland Dental Institute (CDI) sponsored a free clinic at the DEC and served 80 Ashtabula Area City School elementary students. It was a very successful event. CDI will be onsite at the DEC when school starts to serve the needs of AACS students on a regular basis.
One-to-One Reading Sessions
Introducing "Tutors on DEC!" We are pleased to be working with RSVP to provide one-to-one or small group reading sessions for students. The children select a book to have read to them by our volunteers and they read a book to our volunteers. Looking forward to many more great sessions! Thank you to Ronne and Avis for getting us off to a wonderful start. If you would like to be a volunteer "Tutor on DEC" call Jen at 440-855-0081.
Presenting at Keys to Community
On February 11, 2019 as part of the 2-1-1 Ashtabula County -Keys To Community event at Kent State, Jen presented information about DEC and the Strong Foundations, Successful Futures– Community Learning & Resource Center. Approximately 40 community, social and human service representatives learned about the project.
Helping Students See Better!
Thanks to the generosity of an anonymous donor, as well as the Wells Fargo Advisors, we have been fortunate to receive donations to specifically fund a Vision Services pilot project. The monies are used to assist students and their families cover the costs to get a vision examination and purchase a pair of glasses. Working together with the Ashtabula Walmart Vision Center, DEC was able to provide our first student with new glasses, second grader Kaylyn!
Save-A-Lot Donates Food Bags
Despite working very hard we know that many area families are still struggling, and at times students may not have enough to eat. Many thanks to Save-A-Lot for providing carts full of pre-packed food bags to AACS to give to children who are hungry. Also, we are now on the Save-A-Lot donation rotation to ensure we have food bags available on an ongoing basis. We are extremely grateful to Save-A-Lot for stepping up to meet this critical need for families in the District.
Growth Partnership Award
The Committee is honored to have received the Workforce Innovation Award from the Growth Partnership for the Strong Foundations, Successful Futures- Community Learning Center project!
CareSource-Ohio CDC Grant Award
CareSource and Ohio Community Development Corporation Association sponsored the "Empowering Communities Grant Challenge". We are extremely honored to be one of 6 award recipients. The grant is designed to address the social determinants of health affecting our community through innovative projects. We proposed the Strong Foundations, Successful Futures- Community Learning Center project as a means to promote success for our District.
Ashtabula Foundation Grant Award
Many thanks to the Ashtabula Foundation for their continued support of the Community Learning Center Engagement Project. From the beginning they have provided funding to ensure that the Committee is able to get the feedback from the community- students, families, other citizens- for the design of the Community Learning Center. This input is critical to make sure the project truly meets the needs, wants, and values of our District.
Check out Guests on DEC! A new episode airs every Tuesday at 7:30 pm and now Thursday at 7:30 pm too! @foundationsfutures
View all of the Guests on DEC recorded stories in our Facebook Video Library