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Elevate Your G.A.M.E
On October 22nd, Kaiser Permanente South Bay and Downey Medical Centers recognized Elevate Your G.A.M.E. with a $16,300 check at a regularly scheduled board meeting of the Compton Unified School District.
Founded in 2002, Elevate Your G.A.M.E. is a nonprofit organization providing mentor and job training programs at local schools in Compton, Long Beach and Wilmington. Its mission is to lift urban teens to a higher level in their Grades, Attendance and Maturity to Empower them to be leaders who bring about positive change in their schools, communities and the world.
With funding from Kaiser Permanente, Elevate Your G.A.M.E. will provide on-site mentoring sessions for 130 urban youth at four school sites: Compton High School, Centennial High School (Compton), Cabrillo High School (Long Beach) and Harbor Teacher Prep Academy (Wilmington).
Michael Freeman, executive director stated, "We are grateful for the financial support that Kaiser Permanente is providing for our mentoring program. As a result, Compton youth are achieving higher grades in school and becoming responsible citizens who are serving their schools and communities. Youth are graduating from high school and going to college instead of going to prison."
According to our most recent Community Health Needs Assessment (CHNA), poverty and unemployment coupled with violence and obesity rates make Compton one of our most high need areas. It had the highest rate of unemployment and more than 22% of the population lives at or below 100% of the Federal Poverty Level. It also had the highest rates of violent crimes in our service area (1,375.8 per 100,000 persons). In 2006, the Los Angeles Times reported, "Compton has 57 different gangs operating within the city, an extraordinary number for a community of only 90,454 residents."
Janae Oliver, community benefit manager stated, “We find hope in programs helping Compton youth elevate their game and achieving academic success. Mentor and job training programs are critical for
cities in our service area struggling with high rates of gang activity, unemployment and limited resources. Through our community benefit program, we are able to invest in programs that help divert crime, reduce the rate of recidivism and keep youth engaged in positive activities to stay on the right path.”
In 2013, Kaiser Permanente South Bay awarded $85,000 in grants to organizations addressing violence in Carson, Compton, Gardena, Harbor City-Harbor Gateway, Hawthorne, Lawndale, San Pedro and Wilmington. Other grant recipients in this category include:
- Boys & Girls Clubs of Carson Teen Programs – SMART Girls, Passport to Manhood
- Centinela Youth Services, Inc. – STARS, Peer/Family Mediation and Conflict Resolution Workshops
- Gang Alternatives Program – My Gangfree Life® 6th Grade Gang Prevention Curriculum
- Long Beach Bar Foundation – SHORTSTOP Juvenile Crime Diversion Program
- The Positive Results Corporation - Stop the Pain, Teen Summit: Healthy Relationships/Violence Free Communities
- Richstone Family Center - REACH (Richstone Educating, Assisting, Counseling, Healing)
- ShareFest Community Development Inc. - Youth Development Academy
- Toberman Neighborhood Center - Middle School Leaders in Training Program and Gang Counselor Training