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Project Aventura: A Family Involvement Initiative

Award Information

Award #
Congressional District
Funding First Awarded
Total funding (to date)

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2009, $500,000)

This solicitation invites eligible applicants to propose research and evidence-based enhancements to mentoring programs based on three strategies: (1) involving the parents and family in activities and services, (2) delivering structured activities and programs for the mentoring matches, and (3) developing training and support for mentors. Research studies and evaluations of best practices have indicated that mentoring programs that provide multiple modes of treatment addressing both individual and environmental characteristics tend to be the most effective. This initiative is authorized by the Department of Justice Appropriations Act, 2009, Pub. L. No. 111-8.

Project Aventura will enhance their mentoring program in Focus Area 1 ' involving the parents and families of mentoring participants in mentoring activities and providing or coordinating services for them. Project Aventura will implement a mentoring enhancement designed to involve parents and families in and provide services to them. This effort will 1) create specific activities for mentors, youth participants and families to participate in together, some of which will be informal recreational activities and 2) provide additional outreach and referral sources to families to meet needs of family members as identified through enrollment, match support, and/or through additional in-person contact provided through this project. The project will serve at-risk primarily Latino youth on the border of Mexico, most of whom are living in poverty. Youth will be enrolled in mentoring programs at Big Brothers Big Sisters and project partner Boys and Girls Clubs of El Paso. Objectives include increasing the number of and levels of participation in family-engaging activities hosted by the agency and its partners, providing training and information supplements to participants, increasing the number of in-person contacts with staff, increasing the numbers of referrals, and increasing the number of program partners to support the project. Outcomes include preventing juvenile delinquency, improving family relationships, improving pro-social community views, and improving peer relationships. CA/NCF

Date Created: September 21, 2009