Young Men Rising Incorporated is giving Henry, Dekalb and Clayton County schools a different option for mentoring Black boys.
“No Young Man Left Behind – Lunch Buddy Program”, is an initiative of Young Men Rising Incorporated. The program was created to allow young male students the opportunity to reach success through mentoring, communication and cultural exposure.
The organization believes that through mentoring, communication and cultural exposure there will be an increase in the high school graduation rate of male students and a greater opportunity to reach success.
I believe that this initiative will help many of our Black and Brown boys improve communication skills among themselves and especially towards and with females.
Young Men Rising Incorporated is a 501c3 Nonprofit Organization that exists to provide young male students with an avenue to greatness through mentoring, positive communication and exposure to different cultural experiences. Our moto is, “No young man left behind.”
YMR fosters a connection between young male students and adult male role models who will work with these male students to develop character, self-esteem and confidence through mentoring and positive communication. Young Men Rising Incorporated was formed in 2019 and is presently seeking a full-time presence in Georgia serving Henry, DeKalb and Clayton County School systems.
Resources that support dismantling the school to prison pipeline are moving outside of Metro Atlanta.
Young Men Rising Incorporated Lunch Buddy Program will provide young male students the opportunity to be paired with an adult male role model who will provide one on one or group setting mentoring during their lunch breaks. This will be an opportunity to communicate with an adult male mentor, who will listen to their interest, concerns, achievements, etc.
Often times, young men come from single family homes, where a father figure may not be present. This sometimes leads to failing grades, emotional and behavioral problems and lack of interest in school. Studies have shown that absent Fathers have led to the highest odds of young men being incarcerated, having a higher level of behavioral problems in school and are more likely to be suspended from school.
The onset of this negative behavior is often observed starting in elementary school. It is our hope to provide guidance, support, encouragement, and form friendships which will establish a rapport and facilitate educational improvement in these young male students.
While the ethnicity of all boys are welcomed to attend the Lunch Buddy Program, the target age is 8 to 12-years old and the target market is African American and Hispanic males (elementary school 4th, 5th and 6th grade).
School personnel will identify each male student who could benefit from a mentoring relationship. These male students may be facing challenges in school, family or academics, or are just at a point where they will benefit from an additional positive enforcement. Parents will be informed by school personnel to assure they are in favor of their student having this opportunity.
Young Men’s Rising has partnered with 7 Pillars.
7 Pillars Career Academy founded by Christina Guillen, is located in Forest, Park, Georgia in Clayton County. The school is the only non suspension school in Georgia, online curriculum built focusing on career development. The school also has an innovative social, emotional learning program that now includes mentoring for the Black boys.
There are benefits of the program for the school. The organization will conduct a variety of fun and interactive activities to expose the male student to etiquette and social skills (i.e., how to tie a tie, hygiene, dress code, etc.), facilitate the collection and distribution of small clothing items, shoes and school supplies to students who may be impoverished or in need, launch a series of fundraising activities what will successfully fund the program and establish a strong network of support with school systems.
Young Men Rising Incorporated is a great resource for our traditional public and charter schools. This year marks the launching the No Young Man Left Behind – Lunch Buddy Program.
It is our hope that Young Men Rising Incorporated can establish relationships with multiple school districts across the state of Georgia and offer the No Young Man Left Behind – Lunch Buddy Program statewide.
Jason has worked in education for over 15 years as a teacher, blogger and community advocate. He speaks and writes primarily about the need to improve education for Black boys, particularly increasing the number of Black male educators in schools. In addition to blogging here at EdLanta, Jason is also a featured writer at Education Post.