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The University of Southern Mississippi - Youth Empowerment Program FY 2006-2008 Grantee

The goal of the Family Network Partnership Youth Empowerment Program is to incorporate a cohort of 25 African American youth from the Dabbs Street and East Jerusalem areas of Hattiesburg into a pro-social program that reinforces healthy life decisions.

The University of Southern Mississippi
118 College Drive, #5157
Hattiesburg , MS 39406
Phone: (601) 266-4164
Fax: (601) 266-4167
E-mail: michael.forster@usm.edu

Title: Family Network Partnership Youth Empowerment Program
Project Director: Michael Forster
Project Amount Funded (FY 2006): $249,430
Target Population: African American Youth, Grades 5-10

The goal of the Family Network Partnership Youth Empowerment Program is to incorporate a cohort of 25 African American youth from the Dabbs Street and East Jerusalem areas of Hattiesburg into a pro-social program that reinforces healthy life decisions. Project partners include the Hattiesburg Public School District , the Pine Belt Area Council of the Boy Scouts of America, the Holy Rosary Catholic Church, and the Pine Belt Association for Families. The overall program seeks to provide participants with: positive peer influences; social, cognitive and emotional skills; clear rules and expectations of appropriate behavior; and sustained contact with caring adults. Each participant benefits from the project's case management approach. All cases involve community service and family-based activities that dovetail with the center-based activities conducted at the Holy Rosary Catholic Church. Activities conducted for academic enrichment purposes include tutoring in math and reading by undergraduate students, computer literacy classes, and mentoring. The personal development component provides physical exercise/games; participation in the local Boy Scout troop; classes/small group discussions on substance abuse, conflict resolution, nutrition, etc.; and family events such as picnics. In the cultural enrichment component, participants learn to appreciate their own cultural heritage as well as the culture of other community groups through visits to diverse cultural sites and seasonal community celebrations. Participants also participate in university cultural events and urban archeology projects with university faculty and students. Project staff arrange classes for participating youth with university workforce development and career counseling staff, and with local professionals as part of the career development component. Participants also engage in youth enterprise activities (bicycle, PC and ceramic shops), field trips to a wide range of work sites, and business basics workshops with university faculty and students. Parents and other relevant family members are involved in developing participants' individual intervention plans. The plans include specific roles and responsibilities for parents such as establishing consistent discipline for misbehavior and participation in program events (participant performances, picnics, etc.).

Click here for a listing of all FY 2006-2008 grantees



Content Last Modified: 1/25/2007 1:26:00 PM
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