Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2010, $499,999)
While research indicates that quality mentoring is a promising delinquency prevention technique, certain program characteristics and elements are moderators of its effectiveness. This solicitation invites eligible applicants to propose evidence-based enhancements that are among these moderators of program effectiveness. The three strategies include: (1) involving the parents in activities or services, (2) providing structured activities and programs for the mentoring matches, and (3) developing and implementing on-going training and support for mentors. This initiative is authorized by the Department of Justice Appropriations Act, 2010, P.L. 111-117.
Little Dixie Community Action Agency, Inc. (LDCAA) will serve children of incarcerated parents in Choctaw, McCurtain, and Pushmataha Counties, located in southeast Oklahoma. The aim of the project will be to prevent delinquency of enrolled youth in the future, thus increasing the likelihood of positive outcomes. The project goals are to reduce juvenile delinquency, improve academic performance, and decrease school drop-out rates by enhancing the capacity of the Passport to the Future Mentoring Program. The strategic enhancement strategy used will be the involvement of parents in the program and provision of services for them (Focus Area One). For this three-year grant period, LDCAA will serve 260 youth/families by hosting activities in which mentors, mentees, and parents participate together, in addition to the coordination/provision of need-based services and training for mentee families. LDCAA expects 80% of participants to successfully complete their academic grade(s), increase assignment completion, and improve overall scores while in the program. Also, 75% of participants are expected to show a decrease in at-risk behavior, and improvement in parent/guardian and social relationships. Progress will be measured through participant surveys, staff monitoring, and a database that tracks data collected during the project.