FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE September 26, 2005
Release No. M-71
HONOLULU NAMED TO LIST OF ‘100 BEST
COMMUNITIES FOR YOUNG PEOPLE’
America’s Promise – The Alliance of Youth today (September 26, 2005) announced that Honolulu is one of the winners of a first-ever national competition to identify the 100 Best Communities for Young People.
The winning communities range from small towns to big cities in 40 states and are being honored for their commitment to provide healthy, safe and caring environments for young people.
The list of 100 is being announced today (Monday, September 26, 2005) nationally.
Honolulu was recognized as one of the top 100 Best, America’s Promise Alliance said, “in part for its strong educational resources and their collaborative programs on behalf of children and youth. Examples of successful initiatives include the Honolulu-based Hawaii Intergenerational Network, partnering senior adults with 30 Honolulu schools to read books, do homework assignments and participate in class activities, and the Honolulu Childcare advisory board, which guides the City in addressing childcare needs of families and encourages other private sector agencies in partnership with the City in expanding child care.”
Mayor Mufi Hannemann said, “We are pleased to have earned this honor because it recognizes the efforts of so many people in so many organizations in our Honolulu who care for our keiki. Their good work in making this a better place for our young people is sometimes overlooked. This is a well-deserved tribute, for our children are indeed our future.”
The City Department of Community Services submitted a rigorous application with the help of dozens of non-profit groups and alliance partners. Community Services Director Debbie Kim Morikawa said, “We just felt that based on the criteria, Honolulu really is one of the best places for young people to grow up. From a national context, for a large metropolitan city, violence rates are low, we have strong family values, and we have a health care system that tries to ensure that every child is cared for.”
America’s Promise founding chairman General Colin Powell launched the competition in May. The alliance includes United Way of America, the U.S. Conference of Mayors, Junior Achievement and the YMCA. The 100 Best were chosen by a panel of civic, business and nonprofit leaders including United Way of America President Brian Gallagher, U.S. Chamber of Commerce president Tom Donohue, former U.S. Health and Human Service Secretary Donna Shalala, baseball great Cal Ripken Jr. and former Denver mayor Wellington Webb.
A complete list of the 100 Best Communities for Young People can be found at www.americaspromise.org
Debbie Kim Morikawa, Director of Community Services, 527-6269.