WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) today announced that $500,000 has been awarded to the Big Brothers Big Sisters Association of Central Ohio by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) under the department’s Local Youth Mentoring Initiative. The funds, which were made available under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, will expand the association’s Project Mentor youth mentoring efforts in a partnership with Columbus City Schools.
“More than 25 percent of students in Columbus drop out of school,” Brown said. “This program is a lifeline for young people by providing students with strong mentors and a support system to encourage their academic success and healthy development.”
The program will support 2,400 students annually by 2011-2012. According to the DOJ, programs like the Project Mentor partnership lead to measurable, positive outcomes for at-risk youth. The DOJ expects 70 percent of students who participate in this program to show positive outcomes in areas of academics, leadership and goal setting, and are more likely to graduate high school.