In June of 2014, beginning as an all-volunteer organization in the city of Kent, WA. Kendrick Glover and Sylvester Craft recognized the need to provide mentors for young men in the Kent area. Their purpose was to disrupt the school-to-prison pipeline by reducing dropout rates among middle and high school male youth and young adults in South King County, WA. GEM engages youth and mentors in a three-pronged approach to prevent and reduce delinquency, school truancy, criminal activity, and other high-risk behaviors.
The goal of this work is to deter young people from becoming a dropout and/or prison statistics. GEM also addresses the social and emotional needs of youth and young adult men of color (including but not limited to African American and Hispanic/Latino) in and around South King County, specifically the City of Kent, WA.
Our vision is that: Through holistic mentoring, every young adult is empowered to be principled, responsible, critical thinkers who affect positive change in their community. GEM differs from other types of service providers that offer mentoring services through our unique approach of mirroring the youth we serve.
GEM is a unique mentoring program that addresses dropout prevention/intervention symptoms which prevent youth and young adults from doing what is right for themselves and others. Services include: One-on-One and group mentoring, outside referral services where needed and weekly activities that benefit young men in their daily lives.
Community-Based Mentoring increases the likelihood of regular school attendance and academic achievement and decreases the chances of engaging in self-destructive and negative behavior. A trusting relationship with a caring adult provides stability for a child and often has profound, life-changing effects.
The Steering Committee is responsible for the development, implementation and oversight of Program strategies. They provide necessary guidance and support to help ensure the success of the program. These individuals represent different aspects of our community and have a common mission; to help young people succeed. Together, they are committed to mobilizing and addressing the needs and concerns of youth and families in the communities we serve through: Informing, Interacting and Inspiring.