U.S. Dream Academy- New Jersey
As the East Orange, New Jersey location of a national organization, we are impacting the lives of children living in a community with high incarceration and poverty rates. Our afterschool and mentoring program has helped hundreds of young people move closer to realizing their dreams.
The East Orange Dream Academy Learning Center realizes that young people growing up with a parent or relative in prison often forget how to dream. They are very likely to end up in prison, too, at a terrible cost to themselves, their families and their communities. Breaking this cycle is important to the very fabric of America.
PURPOSE: To break the cycle of incarceration, by empowering at risk children and youth to maximize their potential by providing them with academic, social and values enrichment through supportive mentoring and the use of technology.
MENTORS: We are seeking quality adults to spend time with children in our afterschool program, as one-on-one mentors. Our diverse Mentoring Team is composed of volunteer college students, career professionals, senior citizens, greek organization members, community organizers and more. Mentors commit to 1 hour per week, during the 3pm-6pm timeframe. All mentoring occurs on-site at the East Orange location. A Mentor Coordinator carefully screens, provides professional development training and supports each Mentor/Mentee match. Internships and credit for service hours can be arranged.
VOLUNTEERS: We are also seeking quality adults to commit to assisting with special projects, tutoring, group activities and special programs throughout the school year and during our summer enrichment program. Those who volunteer generally want to be involved with the East Orange Learning Center, but are not able to commit to being a weekly Mentor. We structure an individual program for those wanting to volunteer.
ABOUT THE LEARNING CENTER: The East Orange Dream Academy Learning Center provides: A state of the art, web deployable self paced, self instructional curriculum to increase reading, math and English comprehension and proficiency, with the capacity to navigate the Internet;
A safe learninig environment for children and youth who are at risk of incarceration, school failure, future unemployment or underemployment, or becoming involved with gang activity, or involved with the criminal justice system;
strategic partnerships with faith-based organizations, school systems, major corporations and local businesses, and community services groups to build a program and service delivery infrastructure for the children and families of the nations' inmate population;
Mentoring programs to help children, youth and families develop healthy social and emotional stability.
Carefully screened and trained mentors and staff engage in rigorous, ongoing instruction and professional development opportunities.