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Transportation

Bridging Diversity GAPS in the UPSTATE

G.A.P.S. focused on the extension of effective emergency services to minority groups, specifically the growing Hispanic minority in the Upstate. G.A.P.S. noted that emergency services' ineffectiveness in responding to specific crises is often related to language barriers, as well as the general reluctance of the Hispanic minority to use emergency services for (1) fear of INS or deportation, (2) fear of losing U.S.-born children, or (3) prior negative experiences with authorities. G.A.P.S.

DLI-ted to Bike

DLI-ted to Bike’s project is designed to help fifteen at-risk middle schoolers to get into the flow of “bike-friendly” Greenville. The middle schoolers will be from the Sterling Community, a neighborhood that is in transition. The DLI project will help provide these students with a more intimate overview of biking, better nutrition habits; and explain how to avoid poor eating and how a lack of exercise can lead to heath problems such as obesity, diabetes and a shortened life span.

Dream Connectors

The primary goal of the Dream Connectors is to provide seventh grade students, primarily those from less advantaged backgrounds, with the opportunity to learn about diverse career opportunities available in the Upstate. The project consists of pilot programs that will connect students at the Hughes Academy of Science and Technology and Lakeview Middle School with Upstate businesses, namely BMW, Greenville Health System and Michelin.

Embrace SC

Embrace SC has created a website that can be utilized as a tool for companies who are targeting and recruiting diverse candidates to the Midlands. Mindful of the negative perception that many people still have of South Carolina, the group’s website provides links to organizations, activities and relevant resources in the Midlands that cater to diverse individuals in the following categories:

Key Konnectors

Background/Situation Analysis

On the Road Again is a project of the South Carolina Foster Parent Association which provides donated cars to foster care youth who are at least 18 and not yet 21 years old, actively employed, pursuing a GED or engaged in a post-high school educational program. With adequate transportation, these young people are able pursue their goals of continuing education and employment, allowing for a more successful transition into adulthood.

Road Runners

The Road Runners' project was to create a resource guide for newly-arrived immigrants that explains and presents the key customs, services and expectations of the Upstate community that would help ease the integration process. The Road Runners recognized that there were both explicit and implicit challenges integrated into the Upstate culture making it difficult for immigrants to integrate.

VGER: Public Transportation—Greenville, SC

VGER Team members focused their project on studying the issue of public transportation in Greenville County and examining the current Greenville Transit Authority (GTA) transportation system in Greenville. The team conducted a survey to determine the current perception of public transportation in Greenville. They found that an overwhelming majority of those surveyed owned their own form of transportation and had never used GTA for public transportation.

Village Flyers

The Village Flyers Project (VFP) creates a bicycle club to serve middle school students in the underserved community of Plantersville in Georgetown County. Scheduled to debut next summer, VFP is based on Momentum Bike Clubs, a proven model successful in upstate South Carolina. It is aided by affiliation with the Riley Institute Diversity Leaders Initiative Capstone Service Project. VFP uses an intentional approach to engage youth within their communities in a manner that affirms their assets and strengths.

WICnic

The WICnic Group seeks to improve health and life success prospects for economically disadvantaged children in South Carolina by providing families with greater access to nutrition counseling and healthy food options. We opted to leverage an existing USDA program – Women, Infants & Children (WIC) – that is administered in South Carolina by the SC Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) (www.scdhec.gov/wic). Research has shown that WIC plays an important role in improving birth outcomes, containing health care costs and improving children’s diets, among a long list of benefits. But barriers, such as transportation, prevent many who need the service from receiving it.