Power hour
Jackson EMC gives grant to fund homework help at Boys & Girls Club of Jackson County

JEFFERSON - The Jackson Electric Membership Corp. (EMC) Foundation recently awarded a $15,000 grant to the Boys & Girls Club of Jackson County to fund the club's "Power Hour" homework help and tutoring program.

"Power Hour" provides club members with a structured time and place for staff and volunteers to help them complete homework assignments and bonus activities so they can be prepared for class and proud of their accomplishments.

"(The grant) means we're going to serve more children in our after-school and summer program and provide more tutorial help," said Michael R. Williams, the club's executive director.

About 325 children will benefit from the program, which was launched in 2003, Williams said.

Young people who consistently complete their homework develop a deeper understanding of the work and are ready to move on to more challenging concepts, according to a news release. With proper guidance and support, every club member has the chance to develop self-directed learning skills and be successful in school.

The club will also use the grant to purchase KIDSTRAX software to help keep accurate membership numbers and information, providing the data it needs to apply for grants, develop resources and measure program outcomes, the news release states.

"We really appreciate their (the Jackson EMC Foundation's) support in providing the opportunity for children in the Jackson County area to be able to enjoy an after-school program like the Boys & Girls Club," Williams said.

Grants are made possible by Jackson EMC members' contributions to the Operation Round Up program, which rounds up electric bills of participating members to the next dollar amount and uses the spare change to do charitable work. Since its creation in October 2005, the Foundation has awarded nearly $3.5 million through 308 grants to organizations and 132 grants to individuals.

Any individual or charitable organization in the 10 counties served by Jackson EMC - Banks, Barrow, Clarke, Franklin, Gwinnett, Hall, Jackson, Lumpkin, Madison and Oglethorpe - may apply for Foundation funding by completing a grant application, available online at www.jacksonemc.com/Guidelines-for-Funding.106.0.html or at local Jackson EMC offices. Applicants need not be a member of Jackson EMC.