Youth leaders from Neighborhood Service Organization’s (NSO) Youth Initiatives Project (YIP) hosted its annual Male Empowerment Breakfast rcently at The Matrix Center in Detroit. The purpose of the youth driven event is to support the young males in the YIP program in overcoming daily challenges and to provide the opportunity for the leaders of today to guide the young leaders of tomorrow.
Nearly 100 YIP youth from Durfee Middle School and the Osborn University Campus attended the breakfast. The focus and theme of the breakfast, chosen by students, is “Tearing Down Fences: Opening New Doors.” The Master of Ceremonies for the event will be Bishop Daryl Harris from Total Life Christian Ministries, who is on the board of the Osborn Neighborhood Alliance. YIP youth also will hear from Christopher Hunter, CORE program coordinator at the Center for Multicultural Initiatives at Oakland University, who will serve as keynote speaker.
Importantly, the YIP consumers will be joined by nearly 20 male leaders from the local faith, business and civic community. These individuals will serve as role models for the young men, listening to and supporting them with the goal of reinforcing the importance of education, preparing for the future and overcoming challenges such as peer pressure, mental illness and substance abuse issues. On the agenda will be the issue of DPS schools on the closure list.
NSO’s YIP program encourages youth activism and peer-to-peer collaboration as a means of improving the capacity of neighborhood and community organizations. YIP’s training provides youth leaders with the skills to plan and organize activities that promote well being and success in life. YIP members plan and organize activities designed toward preventing gun violence and substance abuse in our communities. Many YIP-trained peer educators are emerging leaders in the community, making a positive impact on young lives. YIP is funded by The Skillman Foundation, Wayne County Child Care Fund and Campaign for Black Male Achievement.