Federal funding for various mentoring programs threatened

Posted by Eric Bleier on March 10, 2011

Photo courtesy: <a href=James & Vilija" />

Photo courtesy: James & Vilija

This past week the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate passed and the President signed a two-week continuing resolution to keep the government running through March 18, 2011.

However, the House passed H.R. 1, a long-term Continuing Resolution that will cut government programs by $100 billion for the rest of this fiscal year. This bill eliminates the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), would zero out funding for the Mentoring Children of Prisoners program for the remainder of the fiscal year and cuts Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention funding by 45 percent.

These cuts would severely impact several local agencies’ abilities to work with the youth they currently serve and would likely, if the resolution passes, cut off youth from the services and support they have now to help them become responsible, productive citizens.

Project Aware Mentoring Program (PAMP), operated by Families of Incarcerated Individuals, Big Brothers Big Sisters’ (BBBS) Amachi program and the US Dream Academy all provide caring adult mentors to Memphis area youth who have a family member in prison to provide that young person with a needed role model so he or she can continue to learn and grow to a bright future.

BBBS of Memphis cites that 70% of youth who have a parent incarcerated will at some point become incarcerated themselves, unless they have a positive role model. If you believe supporting youth through mentoring is important, you can voice your opinion to our local Congressional representatives and ask them to pass a Continuing Resolution that restores funding to CNCS and the Mentoring Children of Prisoners program, as well as full funding to OJJDP.

Senators

Lamar Alexander
455 DIRKSEN SENATE OFFICE BUILDING WASHINGTON DC 20510
(202) 224-4944
Web Form: alexander.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=Email

Bob Corker
185 DIRKSEN SENATE OFFICE BUILDING WASHINGTON DC 20510
(202) 224-3344
Web Form: corker.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?p=ContactMe

House of Representives

Steve Cohen
The Clifford Davis / Odell Horton Federal Building
167 North Main Street, Suite 369
Memphis, TN 38103
Phone: (901) 544-4131
Eamil Contact: http://cohen.house.gov/index.php?option=com_email_form&Itemid=111

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