Youth Matter is a program supporting SEEK and College Discovery students at The City University of New York who are currently in or previously were in Foster Care, are orphans, or wards of the court. Youth Matter was established to help facilitate the retention and graduation rate of foster youth in college.
Youth Matter’s Mission:
To enhance the lives of all children, with a focus on preventive programs for at-risk youth. To build self-esteem and values in the lives of the youth – tomorrow’s leaders. To educate youth about living a more healthy lifestyle through nutrition education and physical activities, promoting education and mentoring, creating much-needed after-school programs. To provide resources for youth and families through partnerships and community development initiatives. To remind all that “Youth Matter.”
What makes Youth Matter Inc. different?
Youth Matter Inc. is not just another non-profit organization, but an organization with a message and a mission. Youth Matter, Inc., also doing business as Youth Matter America, is a group of adults and youth dedicated to making a positive difference in the lives of youth of all ages, regardless of race or creed, taking on the challenge to find solutions for problems that face them and their families, and not fearful of being the first to do something that needs to be done. Our focus is on at-risk youth and families.
There are many concerns facing today’s youth. In every community there are hundreds of girls and boys left to find their own recreation and companionship in the streets. An increasing number of children spend many hours at home with no adult care or supervision, or no one to help them with homework. Dependent youth sometimes become victims of parental neglect, abuse, incapacity and /or abandonment.
There is a great need to focus on serving youth most at risk of not reaching their full potential, especially youth in low-income communities. Young people need to know that someone cares about them because they matter — youth matter.
In summary of our history, Youth Matter has engaged in several much needed program-related activities — we have created a lot of “First-time” Initiatives, through lots of hard work and thousands of volunteer hours. Our vision is to develop our main operating programs into national programs to be developed in inner-city communities across America. We desire to offer these programs to other grassroots organizations to keep the youth off of the street while giving them positive alternatives.
Needs We Address:
Our programs are designed to enhance lives of youth through self-esteem building, mentoring, after-school programs, reduction in obesity rates through nutrition education and keeping youth active, and community development. Our goal is to improve self-worth, create responsible behavior, creative healthier lifestyles, and provide life skills for adolescents. Our targeted program goals include reducing the obesity rate, teaching nutrition, increasing successful high school completion; assuring that young adults have the knowledge and skills necessary for productive employment and participation in citizen life; promoting avoidance of too-early parenthood; promoting understanding and tolerance of cultural, racial, and religious differences; and supporting recreational and cultural activities that meet the physical and social development needs of neighborhoods. We also create projects that involve the parents being key stakeholders.
The involvement of the business community is solicited in our efforts, and they have willingly been an important team player toward our success. Economic development and community development is a very important concern of ours, as programs can sometimes just be a band-aid — we look at the big picture in solving problems.
Youth Matter, Inc. does not discriminate against a person or a group on the basis of age, political affiliation, race, national origin, ethnicity, gender, disability, sexual orientation or religious belief.