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Launched in 2014 by journalist Sean Baker, Med City Beat is an independent news source covering government, business and culture in Rochester, Minnesota.

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Jeremiah Program to begin offering services in Rochester this fall

Jeremiah Program to begin offering services in Rochester this fall

A nonprofit that helps single mothers and their children break the cycle of poverty says it's nearly ready to begin serving local families.

Thanks to a recent grant from Mayo Clinic, Jeremiah Program will begin offering empowerment courses this September. The organization eventually plans to build a campus in Rochester that would house up to 40 families at a time and include on-site childcare and development services. 

"The empowerment course is a vital Jeremiah Program component and the catalyst for young women to change the direction of their lives," said JoMarie Morris, Jeremiah Program's regional director. "Empowerment lays the foundation for accountability, with women coming to understand how their actions impact their outcomes."

The Jeremiah Program, which first launched in 1997, has received national praise for its two-generational model. By providing low-income, single mothers with early childhood education, an affordable place to live and opportunities to advance their careers, the program helps stabilize families and find them a path out of poverty.

"Single mothers face an especially daunting journey on the path to earning a post-secondary degree, "explained Morris. "They must juggle classes, homework, childcare, work, and running a household alone."

The organization has been working on plans to launch its program in Rochester since 2015. As we reported last fall, the Jeremiah Program has secured space for a future campus near Lourdes High School in Rochester thanks to a donation from philanthropists Jack and Mary Ann Remick.

Morris said the organization is still on track to break ground on its campus in 2019 and expects the building to be fully operational in 2020.

To qualify for the program, participants must be a low income single mother, at least 18 years of age, with a GED or high school diploma — and committed to enrolling in a post-secondary institution.  

You can learn more about the program through its website.

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