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Passionate About Inspiring Others

Program overview

 

Program Overview
The Power of PURPOSE, Inc. is a one-year program for youth ages 14-18 years old that
meets three times per week (Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays), for two-hour
intervals, at our Bronx, NY location. Youth can be referred to the program by anyone:
e.g. parent, teacher, concerned community member or can be mandated by a criminal
court/juvenile court judge. Power of Purpose believes that youth should not have to be
involved in the criminal justice system in order to receive the intervention necessary to
redirect their future; therefore, youth do not have to be court-involved or have a pending
criminal case in order to be admitted to the program.
Upon admission, each youth undergoes a comprehensive assessment, which evaluates
their emotional, behavioral, medical, educational, and social needs. An individual Plan of
Action is then created, which includes personal, academic, career, relationship and
financial goals for their future. The Plan of Action is uniquely designed to help each
youth understand their purpose and take steps to fulfill it. Each youth is assigned a team
of adults to support and reinforce their Plan of Action. This team includes a Purpose
Coach, a one-on-one mentor, Credible Messenger, and a Celebrity Advisor. Over the next
12 months, youth are immersed in a 4-phase curriculum that teaches positive decision-
making and anger management, builds self-esteem and brotherhood/sisterhood bonding,
develops leadership and business skills, creates a plan for higher education, builds the
foundation for the pursuit of a chosen career, teaches global awareness, community
activism, and international humanitarianism. At the conclusion of phase 4, youth who
have successfully completed the program are awarded the opportunity to travel
internationally with other graduates on a global steward trip to volunteer in Africa.
The Power of PURPOSE Team:
The success of Power of PURPOSE and the impact it has on our participants depends on
the adult team members who execute the goals of the program. Our program is designed
to have a Purpose Coach and 3-levels of mentoring to not only create a multi-faceted
adult support system for youth, but to convey the message of Power of Purpose in
different ways.

Problem & Target Market
The Power of PURPOSE, Inc. was created out of a need to find relevant solutions to the
violence, crime and cycle of criminal justice involvement plaguing youth ages 14 to 18
years old in the Bronx, NY.  Youth in the Bronx are not just at-risk, they are high-risk for
becoming court involved, gang involved, and perpetrators of violence. The Bronx
contains some of America's poorest neighborhoods, and the violent crime rate in the
Bronx is considerably higher than the national average. 1 In 2015, the Melrose, Mott
Haven and Port Morris sections of the Bronx had the biggest increase in major crimes in
all of New York City. 2 The Bronx has the second highest number of street gangs and
crews in New York City. 3 Gun violence, in particular, is higher in the Bronx than in other
boroughs. 4 Adolescents in the Bronx are committing a disproportionate number of violent
crimes. 5 In fact, the biggest danger faced by Bronx teens in the past 10 years is dying
from gun violence. 6 The South Bronx, Morris Heights and Soundview sections of the
Bronx have some of the highest number of youth in juvenile detention facilities and at
Riker’s Island than in other areas of New York City. 7
It is no coincidence that these neighborhoods in the Bronx also have some of the highest
levels of poverty, poor housing and underperforming schools in New York City. In 2014,
the Bronx had the highest high-school dropout rate out of all 5 boroughs 8 and the lowest
graduation rate out of all of the state of New York's 62 counties. 9  For African-American
and Hispanic male students, the Bronx has the worst four-year high school graduation
rate in the country. 10
These statistics demonstrate the unfortunate truth that when poor, uneducated youth
search for their purpose in an environment fraught with poverty and violence, the result is
often manifested in gang involvement and crime.  Involvement in the criminal justice
system can be a catalyst to a bleak future—a future without education, without meaningful

 

employment and career opportunities a future without purpose that leads
back to the criminal justice system.