About PKZ

Parramore Kidz Zone and Youth Employment 

Mayor Buddy Dyer and PKZ employees at farmer's market booth Parramore Kidz Zone 

In 2006, Mayor Buddy Dyer launched Parramore Kidz Zone (PKZ) with the goal of leveling the playing field for Parramore’s children, equipping them to become successful, healthy, well-educated adults. 

For over ten years, PKZ has been investing in research-tested ways to make a difference in children’s lives, including early childhood education, after-school programs, mentoring and tutoring, access to health care, parenting education, youth development programs for teens, college access assistance, jobs, and more. 

Since PKZ was created in 2006: 

  • More than 5,000 children have been served 
  • Juvenile arrests in Parramore are down 66% 
  • Teen births in Parramore are down 73% 
  • Children attending early learning programs are up 270% 

For the past three years, every high school senior involved with PKZ has graduated from high school on time and enrolled in college or trade school, or enlisted in the military. The continued success of PKZ earned it the Powell Legacy Award from America’s Promise Alliance for its work transforming a community and the lives of the young people and families that live there.

Commissioner Hill packaging honey with PKZ students
"The success of Black Bee Honey is proof that when we invest in youth they will become leaders of positive change in their community. I’m proud of the hard work of these young entrepreneurs, and the hard work they inspire in others. This is one more example of the positive change I am working so hard for in our community. This is why I am a public servant."

- District 5 Commissioner Regina I. Hill

PKZ Youth Employment 

PKZ’s youth employment program employs Parramore youth in jobs as office clerks, assistant athletic coaches, childcare workers, after school and summer camp counselors, and tutors of younger children. 

Youth employees are also able to open Individual Development Accounts, wherein every dollar they deposit from their paychecks is matched with two dollars from donors. The youth use the money saved to cover their post-secondary education expenses.