The third in a series of town hall meetings concerning the youth of Carlisle is planned for 6 p.m. Monday at the YWCA of Carlisle, 301 G St.
Now called the Carlisle Youth Initiative, the effort builds on two previous community meetings, one in November for the men of the town and one in January for the women.
The initiative has a three-fold goal based on research from the Brookings Institution, according to Carlisle Police Chief Taro Landis. Those goals are to finish high school, not get pregnant or married before 21 and to get a full-time job.
YWCA Executive Director Robin Scaer said meetings will look at the programs that already exist in the town and determine how they can be brought together to have a more cohesive sense of what is available for the middle school age group. There are many programs for elementary school students, and high school students have school activities and employment opportunities.
“It’s a little bit harder for those tweens,” she said.
Landis said there are already programs working in the community, such as Hope Station’s YOGA, GirlPower! at the YWCA, REACH and Carlisle Victory Circle, among others. Eventually, the youth initiative aims to have a program running Monday through Friday for middle schoolers.
“What we’re trying to do is blow up the programs that are already there,” Landis said.
At the meeting, participants will organize into groups based on the skills and talents they can bring to the initiative.
“This one is going to be different because it’s not going to be asking questions and making suggestions,” said Safronia Perry, executive director of Hope Station.
Rather, this meeting will take the initiative from concept to action by offering ways people can become involved in the different organizations and coordinating a public calendar so that people know what each organization does, she said.
By doing so, the community will be creating “a collective voice approach to ensuring that a segment of our population — these youth — are safe and involved,” Scaer said.