Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2010, $716,301)
This program seeks to enhance the understanding of mentoring as a prevention strategy for youth who are at risk of involvement or already involved in the juvenile justice system. While mentoring appears to be a promising intervention for youth, more evaluation work is needed to further highlight the components of a mentoring program that are most effective. In addition, there is a need for research specifically demonstrating the components of mentoring programs that have a significant impact in reducing juvenile delinquency and offending. This solicitation seeks to fund research studies on juvenile mentoring that will inform the design and delivery of mentoring programs. It is expected that the results of this effort will encourage a more effective utilization of resources as well as enhance the implementation of evidence-based best practices for juvenile mentoring. This program is authorized under the Department of Justice Appropriations Act, 2010, Pub. L. 111-117.
This project is a collaborative effort between the University of Missouri-St. Louis, Alliance for Families & Communities Affected by Incarceration and Better Family Life. The dual purpose of the project is to produce evidence of mentoring type effectiveness and differences in mentoring effects across levels of risk. The short-term goals are to compare one-on-one mentoring models to group mentoring models to assess whether one is more effective as a prevention/intervention approach to reducing delinquency and to assess the differential impact of mentoring across levels of risk. The long-term goal examines whether observed effectiveness in group or one-on-one mentoring across levels of risk are sustainable post intervention. Approximately 180 youth who will receive evidence-based mentoring will be recruited for participation. Youths' delinquent behaviors, school-level factors and peer engagement will be assessed for short and long-term impact of the mentoring approaches. Performance measures will be maintained and reported based on current agency data and mentoring effectiveness (impact) analyses will be conducted by UMSL to enhance the integrity of the research. This project has the potential to help agencies maximize allocation of resources by providing evidence that targeted approaches to mentoring can have the greatest impact on youth outcomes. CA/NCF