The Mentoring Male Teens in the Hood program was established in 1996 with 5 boys, and to date more than 3000 boys have come through the program. The goal here is to save young lives from falling prey to all of the evil forces that exist in many of our neighborhoods.
We want to ensure the Kings can read and write as well as understand mathematical equations. The Kings must believe that they are as good, as bright, as smart, as the next guy and if they work hard, they can be anything they want to be. The Kings must realize that no one owes them anything and no one is going to give them anything and if they do give you something, you will have to pay for it one way or another. Each and every report card they receive with A’s in core subjects is an opportunity for cash rewards. This is used as an incentive to push the Kings for the excellence that already exists inside of them.
Speakers from all walks of life and backgrounds (male, female, black, white, and brown) are brought in so young Kings can begin to think about what they may want to do with their lives. We take periodic trips in and out of state to assist the Kings to be exposed and well rounded. Past trips have included Harvard, Howard, and Morehouse Universities, and a youth program in Newark, New Jersey entitled “Street Warriors”. The group has gone on many cultural enhancing trips. Each year in October we go to the Maryland Shock Trauma facility so Kings will see first hand what happens when you pick up a gun in anger and fire it, the damage it does and also the career opportunities offered by one of Maryland’s largest employers.
We want every King that comes through this program to know if you work hard, stay in school, do your best in all things, respect your elders and authority, and get exposed to positive people, you have a much better chance of success, staying alive, and out of the penal system. It is also vital to choose the right friends and stay away from drugs, regardless of the monetary payoff.
After each meeting, we have lunch so that the Kings receive a well nourished meal. We ask someone different each month to provide lunch so no one person is over burdened. We do not have any funding stream so we appreciate donations and ask that all who sign their Kings up for enrollment pay their dues consistently. We attend sporting events, and each year in December we have a holiday party at a local restaurant in the Baltimore area.
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