Creating an environment, empowering youth with the tools that produce self-worth, positive character and enthusiasm, educating them to face challenges, overcoming obstacles achieving success in family, school, and profession. Producing a powerful citizen of these United States of America.
Proverbs 22:6 “Direct your children onto the right path, and when they are older, they will not leave it.”
In the year 2008, What About The Children Here (W.A.T.C.H.) as a non-profit 501 © 3 corporation here in Chicago dedicated to helping inner-city children recognize and realize their own potential. My inspiration for starting W.A.T.C.H. came from my personal experience raising three African American sons as a single parent. Like so many other parents in this situation, my goal was to make sure my sons grew up safely to become productive citizens and fulfill their God-given purpose in life.
Being fortunate to partnership with various organizations like, After School Matters, SOS Village, Chicago, Illinois, Bank of America and many more and also having dedicated and committed instructors we have had a very successful time. This has created a powerful, successful impact on many young men in our community.
The W.A.T.C.H. Youth Empowerment Academy is a multi-purpose initiative that embraces a variety of creative mediums, with an infusion of arts integration programming. Each participant is taken systematically through an inquiry and design unit that guides them through the seven cycles of successful enlightenment; which are frontloading and asking questions, gathering information and constructing knowledge, making knowledge visible and presentation and feedback. Within that six cycles are the four steps of knowledgeable growth which are cooperation, trust, problem-solving and challenge. The cycles and steps are displayed throughout the duration of the program via various distinct modules.
GOALS & OBJECTIVES
Provide opportunities, knowledge and skill-based training to empower students to make positive life choices. Rites of Passage W.A.T.C.H. Youth Empowerment Programs also enable students to deal successfully with the challenges of adolescence and prepare them for the independence and responsibilities of being mainstream students, entrepreneurs, workers, and citizens.
We take each participant systematically through an inquiry and design unit that guides them through the seven cycles of successful enlightenment:
Making Knowledge Visible
*To Prevent Teen Pregnancy
*To Prevent Teen Violence and Crime
*To Prevent Drug and Alcohol Abuse
*To Increase Self - Motivation and Self – Worth
*To Assist Young People In Attaining The Knowledge And Accepting The Responsibilities, Privileges and Duties Of An Adult Member Of Society And To Promote Positive, Effective Life Choices.
THESES PROGRAMS HELPS THE STUDENT TO DEVELOP:
Social competencies: Work skills, family life skills, problem-solving skills, and communication skills.
Moral competencies: Personal values, ethics, a sense of responsibility, and citizenship.
Emotional competencies: Personal identity, self-confidence, and the ability to resist peer pressure.
Physical competencies: Physical conditioning and endurance, and an appreciation for and strategies to achieve lifelong physical health and fitness.
Cognitive competencies: Knowledge, reasoning abilities, creativity, test taking, and lifelong commitment to learning and achievement.
SONs Café: Target Group 1st to 5th Grade. Focusing on teaching young males the fundamentals of reading in a café setting. Incorporating five distinct modules to accomplish.
The modules focus on:
1) Road to Freedom, Quote from Frederick Douglass “Once you learn to READ, you will be forever FREE.” Our comprehensive reading program is designed to create a desire and love for reading.
2) Building Character while Building Model Cars, promotes self-esteem and directly addresses the four steps of knowledgeable growth;
2) Class Without Walls, a progressive arts immersion class that focuses on the ideology that the world is a classroom and everything seen and unseen is a form of artistic expression;
3) Money Matters an in-depth approach to financial literacy for youth that equates money savvy with intelligence that reaches beyond the theory of financial awareness and responsibility into the practice of investment partnerships and wealth management.
4) The Language of Technology (Introduction to Computers) is the glue that brings the other programs to life for families, friends and surrounding community. Youth learn basic computer skills and software literacy while developing their final presentations. Youth also acquire vital independence skills learning a second or third language via a self-paced foreign language computer software program.
W.A.T.C.H. Great Debate: Target Group: 6th – 8th Grade
Great Debate Youth Empowerment Academy teaches teens the art of public speaking and the joy of creative writing. Through the program teens interested in visual arts, music, and public speaking will explore career opportunities in these fields. Throughout the program, teens will present their original works and new oratory skills at public performances.
IMPACT Male Mentorship: Target Group: Boys Ages - 1st – 8th Grade
This mentoring program will link at-risk males with mature males, in an effort to create well-rounded youth. The mentors will develop and strengthen relationships with young males ages 6 -13. These relationships will be fostered through objectives programming within four key areas; academics, culture, politics, and community services.
It Takes One to Make One: Target Group: Males 4th – 8th Grade
This program provides a holistic approach and investigates career possibilities that might exist, in Chicago, through the development of a Community Garden.
G.O.A.L.S. (Go On And Live Successfully): Target Group: Males & Females Grades 6th - 8th Grade
A newly designed violence prevention summer program with an emphasis on teaching youth how to “LIVE” life to the fullest, while discovering and developing the gifts that lie within them. WATCH’s new G.O.A.L.S. program offer academic and career development support to participants and focus on teaching Social Emotional Learning (SEL) skills.
Aunt Dicie's Book Club: Target Group: Males & Females Grades 1st – 8th Grade
This program invites children who live in the blocks surrounding 7700 South Carpenter, Chicago, IL 60620, to come to my home during the summer months once a week to read and share stories of books on my porch. Stats shows that children reading level drop significantly during the summer months. I thought It would be great idea to keep children engaged in reading doing the summer by inviting them to sit on my porch have a snack and read a book.
One Block One Porch One Book: Target Group: Males and Females Grades 1st – 8th.
A spin-off of Aunt Dicie's Book Club. This program is open to blocks on the South and West side of Chicago who would like to take the model of Aunt Dicie's book club and make it their own in their prospective areas. The goal is to keep Children engaged in reading during the summer.