Youth Development Center opening in Tifton

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Published: Aug. 5, 2022 at 10:16 PM EDT
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TIFTON, Ga. (WALB) - The Anthony Bateman Youth Development Center in Tifton is on its last few finishing touches.

The center plans to open at the end of August.

It’s at the corner of 17th Street and Old Omega Road, across from Matt Wilson Elementary School.

Dr. Tonja Tift, a retired Tift County educator, has been named the center’s executive director. This is Tifton’s First ever youth development center that is centered around leading children in the community on a path of success.

“This building, this youth center here has been created to be a positive influence on children. Just being able to give them something to look forward to, to help them with the school, to expose them to different things so that we can take our youth to a positive route,” Tift said.

Kids will be able to experience everything from learning seminars to hands-on career workshops.

The building will also serve as an after-school program with other local organizations like the YMCA and Tift County Recreation Center.

In a separate room, Literacy Volunteers of Tifton-Tift County will provide remedial reading, GED and financial literacy classes.

“I’m hoping that the kids will get a chance to see that there is life outside of Tifton. And so in this building, we want to be able to bring them experiences that show them that there is life beyond Tifton,” Tift added.

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