Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2009, $453,935)
OJJDP seeks applicants to establish mentoring programs that offer a mixture of core services and engage youth with activities that enable them to practice healthy behaviors within a positive pro-social peer group. The target population should be youth at risk of gang activity, delinquency, and youth violence. This program should develop and strengthen protective factors against gang involvement and other problem behaviors. It can be based in a school or community setting. Successful applicants will include organizations, local school districts, and communities dealing with demonstrated gang problems who are a part of a communitywide strategy to combat gang activity. This initiative is authorized under the Department of Justice Appropriations Act, 2009, Pub. L. 111-8.
Dunbar Community Center is requesting $500,000 to implement a three-year, collaborative youth violence prevention mentoring program in Springfield, Massachusetts. Based on the nationally recognized Supporting Adolescents with Guidance and Employment (SAGE) program model, Dunbar/SAGE will engage 50 African-American and Latino males from Springfield, ages 12-14. Upon entry, these youth will be introduced to the three main SAGE components: Rites of Passages; Summer Jobs Training and Placement; and an entrepreneurial experience based on Junior Achievement.
Twenty-five youth will enroll in Dunbar/SAGE in year 1 and again in year 2 with the goal of staying in the program for at least three years. To support youth engagement and provide one-on-one support, encouragement and role-modeling, each youth will be matched with an adult mentor. By combining education, positive gains in personal and social responsibility, and academic achievement with employment training and community mentoring, Dunbar/SAGE will reduce violence among participants and promote positive decision-making.
The Dunbar/SAGE formative outcome evaluation, conducted by the Suffolk University Center for Public Management, will measure progress toward Dunbar/SAGE's short-term and intermediate outcomes. Using a variety of data collection tools, the evaluation will document changes in participant attitudes, knowledge, skills, and behaviors associated with positive decision-making and a decrease in high-risk behaviors, including gang involvement. CA/NCF