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Initiative focuses on graduation gaps, truancy numbers

Program connects young black men to mentors

Initiative focuses on graduation gaps, truancy numbers

MADISON, Wis. - A new communitywide initiative is tackling persistent graduation gaps and truancy numbers for young black men.

The organization 100 Black Men has teamed up with the Madison Metropolitan School District and other community leaders to create Project SOAR, which puts young men between the ages of 12 and 17 in one-on-one mentoring programs for three years.

"We think that not having the permanency of having an adult in their life is really the causation of a lot of problems," 100 Black Men President Floyd Rose said.

City residents, including some Madison police officers and members of the business community have already signed up to be a part of the mentoring service.

The project includes career advice to help students pick future employment and talk about other issues outside their schoolwork.

"This represents for us a profound opportunity to be cast in a different light and help our youth realize their potentials in a one-on-one setting," Rose said.

The project is currently undergoing its soft rollout, and will be officially up and running after spring break.

If you're interested in getting involved, go to 100BlackMenMadison.com.


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