Research has shown that advocacy/mentoring provides a crucial relationship to youth. Often youth that get involved in the criminal justice system or crime do not have healthy family, community or adult relationships. Youth are increasingly becoming involved with drugs/alcohol, crime, risky behavior, and gangs. One way to target this behavior is by creating a meaningful relationship between an adolescent and a college-age advocate. Not only has data shown that high school students are less likely to drop out of school if they have an advocate, but advocates often feel more connected with the community as well. Advocates provide support in social and academic development and will participate with kids in a number of ways. These might include tutoring, recreational activities, community service, eating lunch together or even just hanging out. La Plata Youth Services will provide space for some of these activities if need be. We will match advocates and kids based on shared interests or backgrounds. Our goal with this mentoring program is to provide adequate support and relationships to youth in need. Hopefully this relationship will help kids overcome negative forces and promote healthy development.
-Scott Smith, School Outreach Coordinator
If you have an interest in making a difference in a kid’s life by being an advocate, than this is the place for you! We are currently looking for:
Advocates for Truant Youth: Entails being able to check up on how he/she is doing– if they are going to school, class, or not, and possible tutoring. It is important for an advocate to be supportive of positive attitudes about school. We want enthusiastic encouragement for youth to stay in school.
Tutors and Teachers: If you have a subject(s) that you are good at, we would love for you to share your knowledge! This goes for learning outside of school, such as study skills, music lessons, yoga lessons, art lessons, ect.
Role Models: If you simply have an interest in hanging out and providing support that way, we have a spot for you. Simple things like hanging out, playing basket ball, skateboarding, and riding bikes, can make all the difference in a kid’s life.
Please feel free to click on our volunteer tab, visit us, or contact:
Claire Sheridan, Outreach Coordinator