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YT (YOUTUBE )To view this video, please click here to view it on YouTube
To view this video, please click here to view it on YouTube
One out of every four youngsters in Israel is at risk of not finishing school and other normative frameworks. The situation is particularly dire among children of immigrant families from the former Soviet Union and Ethiopia. Once on the streets, many youngsters turn to crime, alcohol, and/or drugs.
Youth Futures is a revolutionary mentoring program conducted in elementary and junior high schools primarily on the periphery, to help build self-esteem, improve school performance, break patterns of failure and eliminate at-risk behavior.
Youth Futures operates through personal 'trustees', young adults who serve as role models and friends to the children. The trustees undergo intensive training to help further the children's development and to recognise abuse and other problems. After an initial assessment of each child's home, school, and social situation, the trustee, in conjunction with professionals and the child him/herself, develops an individually tailored work plan. Weekly group and individual meetings encourage positive behaviors. The program also sponsors a wide variety of enrichment activities for the entire family. The trustee serves as a liaison with the community, advising the families about informal education programs, scholarship assistance and other opportunities.
Youth Futures focuses on developing the strengths of each child, thereby allowing him/her to develop a sense of self-worth. The trustee is responsible for the holistic welfare of the child and serves as his/her primary advocate, responding to needs as they arise. The program collaborates with government agencies, local organisations and businesses to maximise benefits for the children.
About 10,000 youth-at-risk throughout Israel every year receive the benefits of the Youth Futures program.
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