“We were elated because it allows us to offer more classes,” said Kim Hobson, programs coordinator for the Walker County Children’s Policy Council.
Before the grant, the Council had reduced the number of class times offered to four or five, Hobson said. Now, they plan on expanding it to 10.
The Walker County Parent Project, a 10-week course, is designed for parents of teenage children and shows them how to identify, prevent and handle delinquent behaviors like substance abuse or violence.
Hobson said the classes are also set up to offer parents a type of support group.
“It just allows them to handle it a little better,” she said. “It takes a lot of stress with dealing with it.”
Hobson said most of the parents have at-risk, out-of-control or strong-willed children who were referred to the program by their school or the court system.
Parents enter the Parent Project after their child completes another 10-week course designed to help teenagers develop problem solving techniques that will keep them out of trouble.
Bentley’s office notified Henry Allred, chairman of the Children’s Policy Council, that the grant had been approved Friday.
“Children need positive guidance to help them become productive citizens,” Bentley said in a press release. “This program gives parents the tools and knowledge they need to provide that guidance for their children.”
Efforts to reach Allred for a comment Friday were unsuccessful.
Funds for the grant were made available by the U.S. Department of Justice and were administered by the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs.