Health People’s award-winning Kids-Helping-Kids Mentoring Program, funded by foundations and private donations, is a year-round program designed to help children as young as 5 and as old as 20 understand how to cope successfully with their parents’ illnesses or absences from the home. The program trains and connects teen mentors who have overcome the death, illness or absence of parents due to HIV/AIDS, substance abuse or other chronic illnesses to younger children who are experiencing similar problems of their own.
Children learn and help each other to be drug-free, maintain healthy lives, stay in school and look to the future — no matter what challenges they face today. Mentors are paired with mentees for group and individual recreational and educational activities, including homework help. In a city with a 50% school drop-out rate, Health People’s Kids-Helping-Kids Mentoring Program has virtually no drop-outs — just kids headed toward careers and a sense of their own possibilities.
For more information about how to join the program, or to become a program sponsor, contact Michael Goodhope, Senior Program Coordinator, at 718-585-8585 ext. 228 firstname.lastname@example.org
In 2015, lead mentor Tarik Carr, was named a Mentor of the Year by the Mentoring Partnership of New York & Long Island (MPNY&LI)
Health People’s Mentoring Program was named 1 of 16 Model Mentoring Programs by the National Mentoring Partnership. Why? Because it works.
Outside evaluation under the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development shows that teens in our mentoring program are significantly less attracted to drugs than other adolescents living in similar difficult circumstances and that they stay in school.
“After I lost my parents, I thought my life was over, but then I joined the mentoring program. After a couple of years they asked me to be a mentor, and I realized that I can make a big difference in the lives of other kids who think they’ve lost everything. That means a lot to me.”
“When I enrolled my son in Health People’s mentoring program, I was having problems of my own as a single parent in drug recovery, and he was really floundering. Now, he’s in a charter school at the top of his class. And I’m doing great, too, as a Health People Peer Educator.”
“I like the Kids-Helping-Kids program because they take us to the park to play, and we get to do activities. I like the mentors because they help me with my homework and read me books. And they let us color pictures and draw. Every time I go there I learn something new.”