America's Promise: Tuscaloosa's good for youth

{}{}{}{} Tuscaloosa County has done it again!{} For the third straight year it makes a list of the top 100 Best Communities in the nation for young people.

{}{}{}{} America's Promise Alliance puts out the yearly rankings and it's a pretty tough competition.{} "This is not about you've got a good after school program but we want communities that are helping young people succeed collectively," said Colleen Wilber.

{}{}{}{} The group looked at a number of programs in Tuscaloosa County available to Children including Focus First, which provides free eye screening to children.{} Also, the H.E.L.P program in Tuscaloosa City Schools was among effective programs that were listed.{} It stands for Helping Education-Linking Parents. The system started the initiative itself five years ago without funding to help children stay in school.{} They've seen dramatic results and this year have had to cancel two sessions because they haven't had any student in need of it.

{}{}{}{} America's Promise says those are they type of success stories that keep Tuscaloosa County in the top 100 ranking.{} "We look that kids need a safe place, quality education and a chance to give back."