JAS Teaming With WT Students

It went from a pipe dream to a community success story in just a matter of months... The Joint Alliance for Students provides teens a place to hang out, away from drugs and alcohol, but doing that isn't cheap.

JAS is teaming up with West Texas A&M to make sure the organization can stand the test of time. The Students in Free Enterprise Group, or SIFE, at WT are joining forces with the JAS center.

It's a popular choice among the SIFE students.... There are 113 of them in the group, and 40 chose to work on this project. It's an organization aimed at helping local teens.

JAS founder Stan Scofield says, "If we're going to change the culture of our youth we have to empower them. And by empowering them we have to give them a voice. And that's what this organization is all about - giving these kids a voice."

That voice, though, comes with a price tag... To the tune of several thousand dollars a month. "We need to get through the time when we get some grant funding coming in and that's gonna be after the first of the year."

That's where the business students at WT come in... And they're bringing large scale fund raising plans with them.

SIFE Co-President Biddle Medley says, "Football games, concerts, donations at the mall, just anywhere we can try to find donations, try to get donations from anywhere. We're also creating a presentation so we can go out to small businesses and large businesses to see if they want to have a sponsorship with us."

But their work won't end there. "Once we get the foundation down, we get the human capital in, we're gonna also implement successful plans. Resume workshops, dress for success."

Scofield says he'll be forever grateful. "It's just unbelievable we have a network of college kids who are going to be here, working hand in hand, teaching job skills, holding classes."

Just last week, JAS was in danger of going under... They needed $2,000 to keep their building through October.

They were able to raise nearly three times that much money in just 48 hours, and Stan Scofield credits a lot of that to NewsChannel 10 viewers.

After we ran the story about them needing money last week, donations came pouring in. If you would like to donate to JAS, you can call Stan at 806-674-4004.

The JAS Center at 15th and Madison in Amarillo is not only a safe gathering place for local teens, but it has become a bit of a community center as well. Just this afternoon, the "We Support You Texas" group used the JAS center as a place to wrap gifts for veterans.