Louisville, Ky., – Mayor Greg Fischer and the Office for Safe and Healthy Neighborhoods released their My Brother’s Keeper Plan (MBKLou) to the White House, MBK Alliance and community today – a plan to help young people, specifically young men and boys of color, stay on track.
“We are working tirelessly to give every child the opportunity to lead a happy, productive life,” Fischer said. “Regardless of what part of town you live in, we all own the work of ensuring that all of our citizens have hope and feel connected to our community.”
From kindergarten readiness to coding training for teens, from mentoring to a cultural pass so all children can experience Louisville’s greatest cultural assets, MBKLou compliments the One Love Louisville plan, released in January to help youth succeed. The plans address challenges faced by boys and young men of color and focus on removing the barriers that hinder them from reaching their full potential.
In September 2014, Louisville was one of the early acceptors of President Obama’s MBK challenge which required cities to submit a long term plan for young men and boys of color. The Mayor noted that the milestones of the MBK Challenge overlap with work already occurring within the Office for Safe and Healthy Neighborhoods and the Cradle to Career lifelong learning initiative.
The MBK Challenge is a call to action for everyone to work to enact sustainable change regarding education and career readiness, ensuring all young people have the opportunity to succeed.
“This is part of our community’s plan to create safe and healthy neighborhoods,” said Anthony Smith, director of the Office for Safe and Healthy Neighborhoods. “From JCPS to Metro United Way to our faith and civic leaders to citizens, it will take all of us working together to make sure MBKLou is a success.”
The Fischer administration and its partners – JCPS, Metro United Way, 55,000 Degrees, Louisville Urban League and many others – have numerous initiatives underway, including:
Milestone 1: Ensuring all children enter school cognitively, physically, socially and emotionally ready
• 1000 Books Before Kindergarten
• Excellence Academy – Early Learning Centers;
• Children Exposed to Violence;
• BOUNCE – Building Resilient Children and Families; and
• Kindergarten Countdown.
Milestone 2: Ensuring all children read at grade level by 3rd grade
• Share 100 Stories Before 4th Grade;
• 40210 Little Free Libraries Project;
• Cultural Pass Challenge; and
• Every 1 Reads.
Milestone 3: Ensuring all youth graduate from high school
• JCPS Equity Scorecard;
• Out of School Time Coordinating Council;
• Street Academy;
• Men of Quality;
• Males of Color Resolution;
• Boys of Color Celebration; and
• Kentucky Youth Career Center.
Milestone 4: Ensuring all youth complete post-secondary education or training
• Coalition Serving Young Adults;
• 15,000 Degree Initiative;
• ACT boot camps;
• Coding at the Beech; and
• Financial Aid workshop for boys of color.
Milestone 5: Ensuring all youth out of school are employed
• Kentucky Youth Career Center;
• Mayor’s Youth Opportunity Showcase;
• Right Turn; and
• Youth Build.
Milestone 6: Ensuring all youth remain safe from violent crime
• Zones of Hope;
• Metro Mentors;
• Be the One Mentor Challenge;
• JCPS & LMPD Liaison;
• Fatherhood Programming at Metro Corrections;
• JCPS Mental Health Counselors;
• Psychological First-Aid Training; and
• PAL Coalition – Youth Mental Health First Aid.