Local Foster Youth Receive School Supplies through ACE Project

(L-R) Stephanie Landin, Rocio Ortiz, Luis Torres, David Varela, Anitra Parrish


IMPERIAL — August has a been a busy month with the Imperial Valley Project ACE Program hosting an event at Imperial Valley College (IVC) earlier this month and teaming with another foundation for a good cause this past Saturday.

The Imperial Valley Regional Occupational Program’s (IVROP) Project ACE is a youth program for current and former foster youth.

The busy month began August 11 with a Career Conference event held at IVC, an event that included career-related workshops for Imperial Valley foster youth as well as a school backpack giveaway with supplies gathered through a donation drive during the summer.

DSC_0396“We help prepare youth for college, help them through high school, and help them get ready for college or training after high school,” said Luis Torres, IVROP Project ACE Program manager.

Following the IVC workshops, Project ACE got back to work teaming with the Starts with ARTs foundation for the third annual KickStart the ARTs campaign. Together they handed out new backpacks filled with school and art supplies to Imperial Valley foster youth on Saturday morning.

During the back-to-school time of the year, most kids are out shopping for clothes and school supplies, however, some are forced to work with the bare minimum due to circumstances and the economic climate in the Imperial Valley, according to organizers.

“With this time of year going back to school, we want to help them by providing them with school supplies for their education that every kid deserves,” said David Varela, Starts with ARTs Foundation founder.

“We want to make that opportunity possible for kids that are a little less fortunate during this time and need little bit extra help,” Varela said.