Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2011, $500,000)
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 by the Department of Defense and Full-Year Continuing Appropriations Act, 2011, Pub. L. 112-110.
University of Louisville Research Foundation, Inc. will test a mentoring model that incorporates developmental, cross-age components with middle school youths at risk for delinquency. The project will target a population of 150 truant middle school students from three schools. The project will test the overall effectiveness of the cross-age developmental mentoring model, and identify the specific program components of developmental mentoring and intervention dosage (length of time in mentoring) that are most effective in reducing juvenile delinquency. These goals are critical to the mentoring field because they contribute to the existing research/best practices evidence for mentoring programs' effectiveness on reducing juvenile delinquency risk. This project also offers the opportunity to gather research evidence about applying other types of non-conventional mentoring strategies (cross-age developmental mentoring) to curb juvenile delinquency.