Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2021, $499,638)
The Boys & Girls Clubs of Silicon Valley (BGCSV) serves at-risk youth across Santa Clara county through mentoring programs to prevent youth from engaging in delinquent behavior such as crime, gangs, drug use, and academic failure. BGCSV will implement the Youth Voices Peer Mentoring (YVPM) program to reach 500 youth ages 5 to 13 with weekly mentoring and support by well-trained peer mentors ages 14-17. This program will operate at five BGCSV sites that have been identified as high crime and gang areas. Mentees will be recruited based on their risk factors associated with juvenile delinquency, gang involvement, drug use and poor academic performance. Teen mentees will be recruited from with BGCSV's teen leadership programs and through referrals from local schools. Through the YVPM program, teens will develop a calendar of topics which will be used to create mentoring activities, engage public speakers and develop community service projects. Mentors will meet with mentees at least once a week for an hour to provide homework help and conduct activities around the chosen topics. Objectives for this program include: 1) Engaging 500 mentees between the ages of 5-13 in high quality peer mentoring once a week for at least one hour; 2) Recruiting 50 teens to be trained as peer mentors for youth once a week for at least one hour; 3) Engaging teen mentors to participate in Youth Voices bi-monthly sessions to discuss chosen mentoring topics and activities, hear from guest speakers, and conduct community service projects; 4) Match teen mentors and youth mentees to provide homework help, life skill development, and to conduct activities based around topics chosen by teen mentors; and 5) Carefully track and measure program outcomes to continuously provide improvements to the program and to report into OJJDP performance measurement system. BGCSV will measure program outcomes through a variety of instruments including attendance and participation software; youth, parent and staff evaluations; program surveys; pre-post assessments; and student grade reports. BGCSV will also track performance measures outlined by OJJDP for FY2021 including program quality outcomes, youth protective factors measures, involvement in the juvenile justice system, victimization, training and technical assistance provided, and others. None of the information collected by BGCSV will constitute research for generalizable knowledge.