Purpose: His/ Her 2econd Chance Mentoring Program where at-risk youth are invigorated, inspired, and ignited to become strong and creative leaders in their communities. To support group and one-to-one mentoring for youth at risk of educational failure, dropping out of school, truancy, involvement in delinquent activities, including gangs, pregnancy, or single parent.
Within the past 10 years, mentoring has taken on a new dimension and a new target disadvantaged children and youth. It has emerged as a promising approach for enriching children's lives; addressing the isolation of youth from adult contact; and providing, on a one-to-one basis, support and advocacy to children who need it. Mentoring is also recognized as an important vehicle for harnessing the talents of volunteers to address the problems of poverty (Freedman, 1992).
Congress has recognized the potential of mentoring as a tool for addressing two critical concerns: poor school performance and delinquent activity. Congress also has recognized the importance of school collaboration in mentoring programs, whether as a primary applicant or in partnership with other public or nonprofit private entities.
In determining whether a one-to-one mentoring experience made a tangible difference in the lives of these young people, the study identified several positive results:
Mentored youth were 46 percent less likely than the control group to initiate drug use during the study period. The finding was even stronger for minority youth: They were 70 percent less likely to initiate drug use when in a positive mentoring relationship.
Mentored youth were 27 percent less likely than the control group to initiate alcohol use.
Mentored youth were less assaultive, skipped fewer days of school, and had much better relationships with their parents.
P/PV concluded that the research presented clear and encouraging evidence that caring relationships between adults and youth, resulting in a wide range of tangible benefits, can be created and supported by mentoring programs.
The relationship between the private nonprofit sector and the schools is critical. Real collaboration must take place with joint decisionmaking. Problems in implementing and operating the program have occurred when the relationship is weak.
Goals: To reduce juvenile delinquency, truancy, low self-esteem, teen pregnancy, and gang participation by at-risk youth; to improve academic performance of at-risk youth; and to reduce the dropout rate for at-risk youth.
Objectives: The objectives of this initiative are to:
Provide general guidance to at-risk youth.
Promote personal and social responsibility among at-risk youth.
Increase participation of at-risk youth in elementary and secondary education and enhance their ability to benefit from this schooling.
Promote Confidence Builder Seminars.
Discourage teen pregnancy through the Girl Talk Series.
Discourage use of illegal drugs and firearms, involvement in violence, and other delinquent activity by at-risk youth.
Discourage involvement of at-risk youth in gangs.
Encourage participation in service and community activity by at-risk youth.
Promote the Professional Speakers Series.
Promote the Intern Opportunities Program.
Programs should target only at-risk youth. This solicitation uses the term "at-risk youth" to mean a youth who is exposed to high levels of risk in his or her family, home, community, and social environment, which may lead to educational failure, dropping out of school, or involvement in juvenile delinquency, including gangs and teen pregnancy.