U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

Pen or Pencil Mentoring Program

Award Information

Award #
Funding First Awarded
Total funding (to date)

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2011, $3,000,000)

The Multi-State Mentoring Program was established to support the enhancement or expansion of initiatives that will assist in the development and maturity of community programs to provide mentoring services to high-risk populations that are underserved due to location, shortage of mentors, special physical or mental challenges of the targeted population, or other analogous situations identified by the community in need of mentoring services. This program is authorized by the Department of Defense and Full-Year Continuing Appropriations Act, 2011, Pub. L. 112-110.

The National Alliance of Faith and Justice (NAFJ) will implement PEN OR PENCIL (POP), its culturally compatible, positive behavioral support, that uses group and peer mentoring as an evidence-based approach to reduce the likelihood of juvenile delinquency. Through youth-serving affiliates in Metropolitan, DC, including Prince George's County, Maryland; Atlanta, Georgia; Pine Bluff, Arkansas; Seattle, Washington; North Chicago, Illinois; Kansas City, Missouri/Kansas; St. Louis, Missouri; East Baton Rouge Parish, Louisiana; Birmingham, Alabama; and Los Angeles, California, POP will target 3,000 predominantly African American youth, ages 8-17. POP will recruit 600 mentors annually, ensuring a mentor-mentee ratio of 1:5. POP also supports parents by offering training to counter overuse of suspension for their children; training for mentors and parents on improving communication techniques with high-risk youth, targeted mentor recruitment; and academically enhanced theme-based activities for positive youth development. NAFJ will track OJJDP performance measures and program goals through pre- and post-program attitudinal surveys, case management instruments, research protocols designed by the Association of Black Psychologists, and a web-based data collection system for incentive-based participant self-reporting. CA/NCF

Date Created: September 29, 2011