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Franklin Township Youth Council Receives State Award

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NJRPA Awards Committee Member Jim Cunningham, NJRPA President Dawn Thompson, Saffie Kallon, NJRPA Awards Committee Chair Karen Zimmerman Credits: Courtesy of the Township of Franklin
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Franklin Township Youth Council Receives New Jersey Recreation & Parks Association Excellence in Recreation Programming Award

On Tuesday, March 7, 2017, Saffie Kallon, Program Coordinator for Franklin Recreation and the Franklin Township Youth Council accepted the Daniel M. Gasalberti Excellence in Recreation Programming Award from the New Jersey Recreation & Parks Association (NJRPA) for the Franklin Township Youth Council (FTYC).  Attended by industry professionals from throughout the state of New Jersey, the NJRPA annual awards dinner recognizes outstanding recreation and park agencies for excellence in programming and park design. They also honor dedicated professionals and leaders in parks, recreation, conservation, and leisure services who have provided exceptional achievement and service to the recreation field.

The Franklin Township Youth Council, a community service youth group under the auspices of the Recreation Department,  is a volunteer community service organization staffed and governed by youth, ages 12-18, based in Franklin Township, NJ (Somerset County). The Youth Council's goal is to develop and support community youth and charitable projects through its various committees. This year alone, FTYC has spearheaded half a dozen events for Franklin Township youth. This season’s programs celebrated the world's diversity with hands on art and music activities in Create Your World. They allowed participants to explore the world of science with Mad Scientists! and Charged Up. They empowered young women with Operation: Beautiful. They taught children about the differences that make us unique with All Around the Board. Last, but not least, challenged kids to save the President in The Great Escape.

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“Of all the work I’ve done in recreation in my life, I’m proudest of this organization,” Kallon said during her acceptance speech at the NJRPA ceremony. “The work ethic of these young people is truly amazing.”

FTYC has six different committees-Diversity, Education, Environmental, Health & Wellness, Therapeutic, and Youth & Community. Each of these committees has two committee heads that must go through a training which covers peer leadership, problem solving, project/event planning from idea to fruition, conflict resolution, and working with children. Taking a unique stance on hands on leadership training, members create events and programs that are in line with their committee mission, design event advertising, book venues, and cultivate relationships with potential program partners (school administration, other clubs and organizations, etc.). In addition to developing community programming, members participate in local events and programs as volunteers in order to improve and strengthen their community through service.

The application process for the program is rather rigorous, with a formal written application followed by a 2-month provisional period. The Youth Council program currently stands at 64 youth with another 24 applicants pending.  Applications for the program are accepted in the fall.

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Franklin Township

Environmental Victory – Transco Withdraws NESE Pipeline Application to DEP

June 21, 2018

In a small victory for the environment, Transco withdraws DEP’s application for their compressor station in Franklin Twp. on June 14, 2018 for approval under the Freshwater Wetlands Protection Act rules & Flood Hazard Area Control Act rules. Transco also withdrew DEP’s application for their pipeline on the Old Bridge Raritan bay for approval under Coastal Wetlands ...

Bridgewater Police: Avoid Mall for Ongoing Police Investigation

June 14, 2018

UPDATE: According to a Nixle alert from the Bridgewater Township Police Department at 9 p.m., the investigation at the mall has been completed, and the mall will be resuming normal business operations.

Police emphasized that there is no immediate threat to the public and no injuries were reported.

Keep checking back for more information.

Related article: Bridgewater Mall Shut Down ...

Students Lead ‘Die-In’ at Congressman Lance’s Westfield Office; Summit Boy Arrested

WESTFIELD, NJ — Seventeen-year-old Summit High School student Ben Schachter was taken away in handcuffs Tuesday during a gun safety “die-in” protest led by local high school students at Congressman Leonard Lance's Westfield office. Lance was not present at the office at the time.

Read: Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman Talks Gun Violence, School Safety, ...

Dozens of Highland Park Residents Rally Against Recent ICE Detainment of Neighbor, Father of 4

Dozens of community members rallied in front of The Reformed Church of Highland Park on Friday afternoon to voice their opposition towards the recent detainment of local resident Cloyd Edralin by the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

The rally was planned just four days after Edralin, 47, a green card holder from the Philippines and father to four children who are U.S. citizens, was ...

Bridgewater Police: Avoid Mall for Ongoing Police Investigation

June 14, 2018

UPDATE: According to a Nixle alert from the Bridgewater Township Police Department at 9 p.m., the investigation at the mall has been completed, and the mall will be resuming normal business operations.

Police emphasized that there is no immediate threat to the public and no injuries were reported.

Keep checking back for more information.

Related article: Bridgewater Mall Shut Down ...

Students Lead ‘Die-In’ at Congressman Lance’s Westfield Office; Summit Boy Arrested

WESTFIELD, NJ — Seventeen-year-old Summit High School student Ben Schachter was taken away in handcuffs Tuesday during a gun safety “die-in” protest led by local high school students at Congressman Leonard Lance's Westfield office. Lance was not present at the office at the time.

Read: Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman Talks Gun Violence, School Safety, ...

Dozens of Highland Park Residents Rally Against Recent ICE Detainment of Neighbor, Father of 4

Dozens of community members rallied in front of The Reformed Church of Highland Park on Friday afternoon to voice their opposition towards the recent detainment of local resident Cloyd Edralin by the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

The rally was planned just four days after Edralin, 47, a green card holder from the Philippines and father to four children who are U.S. citizens, was ...

Raritan Valley Habitat for Humanity Opening ReStore in Manville

June 19, 2018

MANVILLE, NJ - Raritan Valley Habitat for Humanity is opening a Habitat ReStore in the Marketplace at Manville, next to Walmart on North Main Street in Manville, this fall.

At the store, RVHFH will pick up gently used furniture and goods from Somerset and Hunterdon county residents, and give them a second life at the store's grand opening.

To schedule a time for RVHFH to pick ...

Summer Camp Programs for Children and Teens Announced By Environmental Education Center

BERNARDS TWP., NJ – Each summer, the Environmental Education Center (EEC) in Basking Ridge holds programs that let children and teens explore nature for summer activities that both entertaining and an opportunity to learn about the environment.

The programs are organized and led by the EEC's staff of naturalists.

The EEC is a Somerset County facility located at 190 Lord ...

Somerset County Employees' Health Center Opens in Somerville

SOMERVILLE, NJ - The Somerset County Board of Chosen Freeholders and officials from Integrity Health gathered for a June 12 ribbon-cutting ceremony for a new health care facility on East Main Street.

The Somerset County Partnership Health Center (SCPHC) will serve as an on-site health, wellness and care coordination center for employees of Somerset County, the county park commission, the ...

Raritan Valley Habitat for Humanity Opening ReStore in Manville

June 19, 2018

MANVILLE, NJ - Raritan Valley Habitat for Humanity is opening a Habitat ReStore in the Marketplace at Manville, next to Walmart on North Main Street in Manville, this fall.

At the store, RVHFH will pick up gently used furniture and goods from Somerset and Hunterdon county residents, and give them a second life at the store's grand opening.

To schedule a time for RVHFH to pick ...

Summer Camp Programs for Children and Teens Announced By Environmental Education Center

BERNARDS TWP., NJ – Each summer, the Environmental Education Center (EEC) in Basking Ridge holds programs that let children and teens explore nature for summer activities that both entertaining and an opportunity to learn about the environment.

The programs are organized and led by the EEC's staff of naturalists.

The EEC is a Somerset County facility located at 190 Lord ...