FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 5.30.2019
ITEX Affordable Foundation, Inc. has announced that it will launch an At Risk Teens Mentoring Program on June 3, 2019. The non-profit will be working in conjunction with ITEX Property Management, LLC and will recruit at risk teens at its properties that include Park Central, Pebble Creek, and Cedar Ridge who meet the program’s criteria for mentoring and will train them to lead activities for younger children at the listed programs. The program, which over time may broaden its services into the local community at large, aims to provide activities for participants that enhance their well-being and promote improved community relationships. Teen participants will receive training and also participate in other volunteer-based activities at the property, including the summer feeding programs. ITEX hopes, in time, to partner with other local businesses to run and grow the program that is sure to enhance the community at large.
ITEX’s Teens Mentoring Program will be implemented in phases. First, ITEX will recruit 12 adult mentors to oversee the program. Four adults from each of the participating properties will help to evaluate and recruit teen mentors—approximately 5-8 from each property. ITEX will provide training for adult mentors so that they, in turn, can provide effective oversight and training of teen mentors. Once the mentors are in place, property activities designed for younger children may begin.
Recruiting Teen Mentors
The program will recruit at risk teens who meet certain criteria. For instance, residing in a low-income community, having suffered some type or trauma, or attending a school with a low graduation rate can be used as identifying markers. Adult mentors will work with teen mentors to help improve self-esteem, elevate their participation in the community, and provide them with healthy ways to spend their time while learning new skills.
The programs mentoring activities will take place at ITEX properties. Each activity must be approved by ITEX as well as the parents or guardians of the participants. Each activity will support relationship building and improved skill sets. Adult and teen mentors can suggest activities throughout the year.
Benefits for Teen Mentors
Throughout the program, the teen mentors will track their hours and submit them periodically for review. ITEX is planning to award its teen participants with guest speakers and special recognition as they reach certain milestones in their volunteering record. At the end of the school year, ITEX requests that participating senior mentors apply for its $5,000 college scholarship. As a service activity, the mentoring program will provide at risk teens with substantial volunteering experience that may support their college applications.
ITEX Property Management, LLC manages more than 49 properties in the region. It hopes its new program will enrich the lives of tenants and promote improved community relationships for all.