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3 D.C. area communities honored as best for young people

Sunday - 10/16/2011, 10:53am  ET

WASHINGTON - Looking for a great place for kids? Three communities in the D.C. area are being honored for being among the 100 best for young people.

Alexandria and Prince William County in Virginia and Maryland's Calvert County have all been honored by Colin Powell's group America's Promise Alliance.

Calvert County takes one of the top spots for the second time for arranging a system of alternative programs for kids - such as twilight school, 9th grade academy and algebra enrichment and one hour lunches in high schools, where students have access to extra help and social skills training.

Alexandria gets the nod for for the fourth time for programs that address issues in education and gang violence. Alexandria's "Child Thrive!" program aims to help parents find employment, get domestic violence counseling and sign up for public assistance.

Prince William County is among the top 100 because of programs like "GEAR UP," which prepares low income middle school youth for post-secondary education. The county's healthy kids coalition aims to promote healthy living and address issues related to childhood obesity.

WTOP's Debra Feinstein contributed to this report. Follow WTOP on Twitter.

(Copyright 2011 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)