WASHINGTON, D.C. -U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) announced that $500,000 has been awarded to the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Ohio. The funds will address the problem of juvenile delinquency through professionally supported, one-on-one mentoring relationships. The Administration on Children, Youth and Families' Mentoring Children of Prisoners grant funds that will help Big Brothers Big Sisters utilize technology to enhance and increases access to mentor training.
"This funding means that the most vulnerable children in the Columbus area can come home from school and have a caring, consistent adult present in their lives" Brown said. "These funds will help Big Brother Big Sisters of Central Ohio grow and continue their important work."
Brown wrote a letter of support to the Administration on Children, Youth and Families' Mentoring Children of Prisoners Program Funding organization on behalf of this program.
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Ohio supports more than 3,500 children who experience multiple risk factors for juvenile delinquency. Their mentoring programs serve youth ages 5-18, most of whom live below the poverty line, are growing up without two parents and are behind academically.
This grant will help Big Brothers Big Sisters expand their outreach to support 3,520 mentoring relationships for at risk youth in 2010-11; 3,690 in 2011-12; and 3,750 in 2012-13.
Mentors, who are required to make a one-year commitment, meet in person with their child for an average of at least one hour once per week. The program estimates that that 70 percent of mentees who complete the program will remain consistent or show improvements in their developmental assets, making them more likely to attain their high school degree.