Reading for Life

  • IN


1000 South Michigan Street
South Bend

United States

About Us

Reading for Life is a mentoring program for juvenile offenders that combines literature with a personal study of seven classic virtues to reduce juvenile recidivism. We exist as an alternative to prosecution for non-violent offenses. 

Reading for Life is more than a mentoring program - it is a strategy conceived to combat the factors that change an at-risk young adult to a juvenile delinquent.  Through small group mentoring, RFL uses literature and classic virtues to inspire youths to make better life choices. With a proven track record in reducing delinquency, RFL is countercultural to the current punitive juvenile justice system.  RFL impacts recidivism rates by teaching critical thinking skills and allowing youths to course-correct their own lives by making better individual choices.

Our Mission

The mission of Reading for Life is to ignite virtuous character development in at-risk youth and young adults through personal mentoring relationships built around literature. Specifically, our goals include:
Empowering at-risk youth and young adults to adopt virtuous living by facilitating small mentoring groups.
Engaging young people in their community through mentoring relationships and service projects.
Advocating for marginalized youth and helping them envision a better life trajectory.
Presenting a rehabilitative option to punitive justice for those youth involved in the criminal justice system.
Educating and training qualified mentors to implement the proven Reading for Life model.
Continually assessing and evaluating, through quantitative and qualitative measures, the effectiveness of the Reading for Life model.