Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2011, $280,964)
The Mentoring for Youth with Disabilities Initiative builds upon the foundation of evidence-based practices for effective mentoring and encourages communities to implement and enhance mentoring programs for youth with disabilities. These mentoring efforts will integrate best practices and proven principles into mentoring service models, including efforts to systematically recruit, train, and support mentors in their efforts to encourage individual youth to maximize personal strengths and to develop compensatory skills in specific areas of disability. This program authorized by the Department of Defense and Full-Year Continuing Appropriations Act, 2011, Pub. L. 112-110.
IMPACT Mentoring will collaborate with various school systems in Jefferson County, AL to identify children between the ages of 4-18 with Attention-Deficit Disorder (ADD) or Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and other behavioral issues stemming from low intellectual abilities that can be associated with children who are involved with the juvenile justice system and/or at-risk of involvement in delinquent behavior, and match them with mentors. Adult mentors who want to make a positive difference with these children will spend at least one hour each week for a minimum of one year with them. Mentors will model appropriate behavior and service to the community while providing the youth with positive outlets for dealing with their disabilities, encouragement to stay in school, abstaining from drugs or alcohol, accountability to perform better as well as giving them an additional support person to help them deal with day to day stressors and negative influences. IMPACT Mentoring will make 75 quality matches each year for a total of 225 matches over the three year period of the grant. Performance data, including the number of children beginning new matches, match duration, frequency of match activities, and number of days that children are on a waiting list will be collected to benchmark progress.
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