Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2022, $681,818)
Youth Mentoring Connection’s (YMC) Mentoring Making Resiliency Real (MMRR) Program will provide one-on-one and group mentoring and positive youth development activities for 300 underserved Los Angeles youth ages 13-17 (at time of enrollment), who reside in Los Angeles Qualified Opportunity Zones (QOZ) and other underserved LA communities. YMC connects Los Angeles underserved and marginalized youth with caring adult mentors through a strength-based and trauma-informed model. The YMC Mentoring Model is grounded in YMC’s trademarked Gift Centered Approach which is heavily influenced by Carl Rogers work of unconditional positive regard and Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs with the structured program drawing on Joseph Campbel’s Hero’s Journey. YMC builds a community of youth, staff, mentors, and other community providers, through healing circles featuring indigenous Northern/Southern American, African, and other cultural practices to help youth connect and build a safe and loving community in which they thrive. The YMC Mentoring Model of group and one-on-one mentoring uses the best practice and research-supported Elements of Effective Practice for Mentoring (EEPM) and the National Crime Institute rated effective Positive Action (PA) to strengthen the unique and data-supported YMC Mentoring Model. By integrating EEPM and PA with the YMC Mentoring Model, YMC is providing a program design that increases positive behaviors and resiliency, fosters increased academic performance, and prepares youth for successful adulting while reducing negative behaviors among youth such as drug use/abuse, chronic absenteeism, truancy, drop-outs, delinquency, and criminal involvement.