Organization to serve more Black boys across Indiana in the areas of character and leadership
INDIANAPOLIS – Next week, the Center for Leadership Development (CLD) will kick off its Fall 2021 Project MR. (Male Responsibility) program at two new satellite locations on the east side and far eastside of Indianapolis. The satellite locations serve as an extension of the main CLD campus, providing educational services and character development programming for Black youth in high-crime areas. Under the satellite agreements, the new locations are committed to offering CLD’s programming curricula and free educational support services to impact the lives of Black students and meet the needs of their respective community.
The Project MR. program focuses on equipping, empowering and preparing adolescent African American males, grades 7 – 10, for achievement by teaching them the appropriate principles, character traits, behaviors, attitudes, and values that lead to personal development, educational excellence, and career success.
The satellite programs will be held weekly at the Community Alliance on the Far Eastside (CAFÉ) on Tuesdays beginning October 5 through November 9 and Edna Martin Christian Center on Thursdays beginning October 7 through November 11, and will expose the “Misters” to educated, upstanding and caring African American male professionals who serve as the facilitators of this program.
Project MR. provides male students, ranging in age from 12 to 17, with a six-week program focused on character and leadership training, personal branding and positive self-representation guidelines, and connectivity to outstanding male role-models and mentors. An expansion of CLD’s ‘Project MR.’ program, the students participating at CAFÉ and Edna Martin Christian Center will work toward becoming responsible males at home, in school, in the community and for their peers.
By the end of the 6-week course, participating youth will learn to authentically believe in and love themselves, closely examine their dreams, identify barriers and the skills needed to overcome them, and will build more positive principles and habits in regard to their conduct.
A survey of 2020 program graduates found 92% valued education, learning and literacy and were prepared to plan for their futures. Even more encouraging, more than 90% articulated how behaving responsibly will help them in their educational pursuits and future careers, citing a desire to make better decisions, become trustworthy young men and get better grades.