Knoxville nonprofit empowers local youth for success

Knoxville nonprofit empowers local youth for success

Posted:
Jimmy  Turner was allowed to stock up at Target on essentials for his first-ever grown up apartment. Jimmy Turner was allowed to stock up at Target on essentials for his first-ever grown up apartment.
"We want to empower them to be able to do day-to-day things without having to worry about their condition," said Alicia Banks, lead family contact for K-TOWN. "We want to empower them to be able to do day-to-day things without having to worry about their condition," said Alicia Banks, lead family contact for K-TOWN.
"[K-TOWN] helps me socially. It helped transition me into the person I am now," said Jimmy Turner. "[K-TOWN] helps me socially. It helped transition me into the person I am now," said Jimmy Turner.

By HAYLEY HARMON
6 News Anchor/Reporter

KNOXVILLE (WATE) - A young Knoxville man was given a special treat Wednesday as he prepares to go out on his own as an adult.

K-TOWN Youth Empowerment Network teams with youth who struggle with emotional, behavioral or mental health issues, giving them the tools they need to become self-sufficient, stable adults.

Jimmy Turner is one of those being helped by K-TOWN.

After achieving a major milestone on his journey, Turner was allowed to stock up at Target on essentials for his first-ever grown up apartment.

"It really is going to be a good day for me," said Turner.

He is moving into a new place just a few weeks before he begins his first year of college at Pellissippi State.

"I want to major in media technologies," he said.

Turner says going to college and living alone are two accomplishments he more than likely would not have accomplished without the help of K-TOWN.

"Very grateful and honored to have such an opportunity," Turner said.

The Knoxville nonprofit serves as a support system for local youth ages 14 to 21 who have social and emotional disabilities.

"Bipolar, schizophrenia, things like that," said Alicia Banks, lead family contact for K-TOWN.

K-TOWN helps teens like Turner tackle daily challenges, but also helps them reach their long-term goals transitioning into adulthood.

"We want to empower them to be able to do day-to-day things without having to worry about their condition," said Banks.

"K-TOWN has been such a huge help in my success as far as growing and transitioning as a youth," said Turner.

With help from a sponsorship by Target, Turner's shopping trip was completely free.

As he shopped for houseware items, he was reminded how far he has come, thanks to help from K-TOWN.

"It helps me socially. It helped transition me into the person I am now," said Turner.

"[We] help them achieve their goals, give them the resources and just watch them flourish and move on," said Banks.

Since the founding of K-TOWN four years ago, Banks says the organization has helped 153 local teens.

They are funded through a six-year, $9 million federal grant.

For more information on what the group provides, including support services for family members, visit K-TOWN's website.

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