Save Our Youth.
WHO WE ARE
Cultivating Youth is a 501c(3) that works to eliminate childhood trauma, restore healing, prevent violence and reduce obesity in New Orleans youth ages 8-18 through physical activity, mental health, education and mentorship. Our Founder/Executive Director (Mack Terrance Sr.), who is a reformed incarcerated male, selects professionals from the community to help influence through speaking engagements, hands-on skill development, workouts in partnership with Motivation Team Athletic Academy along with the daily program initiatives. Many of our initiatives were inspired by our founder’s participation, as an adolescent, in the Velocity Foundation program, which was founded by his Godfather --Julius Wilkerson Sr. We support youth with a youth led, full-circle approach including: physical fitness, social skills, professional development, emotional intelligence, spiritual insight, homework assistance & STEM based learning, life skills, job readiness, nutrition and overall mental wellness.
Childhood trauma and obesity is the main barrier that plagues our community.
We put together youth programs that will lessen the main barriers of obesity and trauma in our community. Our programs attack these barriers by providing breakfast, lunch, dinner and snack options, educational tools, cooking lessons, life skills, quality child care, career exploration, academic support, mentorship, etc. Financial struggles can create barriers to the basic necessities, which makes mental health services, academic support, nutrition and physical fitness our main priority. Our nutrition and physical fitness component of our programs is a direct attack against childhood obesity and overeating, which is a coping mechanism to trauma. Our enrichment and homework assistance component of our program directly assists with academic support that most families can’t afford to provide. Most youth with a lack of resources and funds need outlets to keep them occupied and expose them to different lifestyles and culture. We provide a positive environment that focuses on what they love while also exposing them to experiences and things we don’t think they’d normally be exposed to in their environment through our programs. Our mentors and directors are directly relatable to the youth we serve because even though we have similar lived experiences, we’re able to show them real life examples of people who are just like them but have turned around their circumstances.
HOW WE SERVE
After School: Our after school program is geared towards 8-12 year olds. We operate after school Monday - Thursday from 3:30pm - 6:00pm. Students complete homework/studying with Tulane University students on-site (if needed), actively work with mentors, participate in physical fitness activities or athletic training and will receive a free meal daily.
Mentoring: Our mentoring program is geared towards 13-18 year old youth. We require a check-in, at minimum, once a week with mentors to provide updates on their improvement plans that are curated to their specific needs and/or to participate in enrichment activities.
Summer Camp: Intake 20-40 youth ages 8-12 in the community with discovering a healthy lifestyle coupled with physical fitness, literacy, mental wellness, life skills, culinary lessons, entrepreneurship, different career exploration breakouts, a summer trip & more!
Employ/Volunteers: 5-8 adults, students and athletes on a college and high school level to teach, connect, mentor and peer mentor our youth.
20% of school-aged children are obese.
Only 8% of New Orleans children enter kindergarten developmentally “very ready” physically, emotionally, socially and cognitively.
60% of children in New Orleans experience PTSD.
Among New Orleans families, 21% live in poverty, with African America families experiencing poverty at much higher rates (30%) than white families.
1 in 3
1 in every 3 African American men will spend time in prison in their life.
100% of our mentees are learning conflict resolution and have never experienced incarceration.
100% of our mentees have a fitness goal and regiment that they work to achieve 4 days a week.
100% of our mentees receive daily meals and nutrition.
100% of our youth have an assigned academic assistant.
100% of our youth have access to a therapist and mentor to help combat childhood trauma.