Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2014, $1,753,465)
The National Mentoring Program provides funding to support national mentoring organizations in their efforts to strengthen and/or expand their existing mentoring activities within local chapters or sub-awardees to reduce juvenile delinquency, drug abuse, truancy, and other problem and high-risk behaviors. FY 2014 funding will address the factors that can lead to or serve as a catalyst for delinquency or other problem behaviors in underserved youth, including youth in high-risk environments, children of incarcerated parents and tribal youth. The program is comprised of three categories: Category 1 for organizations implementing one-on-one mentoring programs, Category 2 for Group mentoring programs and Category 3 for a combination of both one-on-one and group mentoring.
YouthBuild USA will launch the YouthBuild BRIDGE Mentoring Project, a 12-month group mentoring intervention engaging young men of color between the ages of 16 and 17 from 45 local YouthBuild programs in 38 states. This project addresses the opportunity gap for young men of color by; a) improving their academic and placement outcomes; and b) and increasing their opportunities to connect with positive adult males of color as role models. YouthBuild USA commits to the following three objectives: 1) Strengthen the mentoring engagement of 1,000 young men of color. The intensive group mentoring environment, with a ratio of 2 male mentors of color to every 6 to 8 mentees meeting twice per month, will allow for opportunities to directly address issues such as violence, fatherlessness, gang involvement, and other challenges that are especially relevant to young men of color in low-income communities. 2) Increase the number of male mentors available for young men of color. Many of the participating programs have volunteers and staff already serving as mentors who will also participate in this project. Additionally, sub-awardees will collectively recruit an added180 men of color as mentors. 3) Develop new training resources for program staff. Deliverables will include a ready-to-use curriculum and documented findings from a benchmarking study of best practices in recruiting male mentors of color. Anticipated outcomes for participating youth include higher program completion rates, increased positive placements, improved retention in placements, and lower post-program recidivism rates. YouthBuild anticipates long-term outcomes to include an increase in YouthBuild graduates volunteering, serving as leaders within their communities, and becoming mentors - "their Brother's Keepers."