Gang Prevention Program
Professor Lillian Ajayi
March 9, 2012
The Gang Prevention Program that I decided to write on is the A.R.I.S.E program, which was founded in 1986 in Miami Florida by Ed Benson. It’s a non-profit organization that provides assortment of time tested, evidence based life skills curricula for at risk youth. In this essay, I am going to focus on the programs history, mission statement, goals, success, and an overall summary of the program.
A.R.I.S.E. is a program founded by Ed Benson, in 1986 in Miami Florida. Since his retirement in 1982, he has devoted 100 percent of his time and energy to making the world safe for children. Mr. Benson and his wife, Susan Benson established a non-profit foundation, the ARISE foundation, which through its Anti-Pollution Committee, alerted, educated and badgered residents and government representatives of the severe environmental problems being caused by Dade County’s garbage incinerator. The primary focus of ARISE Foundation at that time was environmental education. Edmund was committed to protecting our beautiful and delicate environment, and to ensure that today’s children and their children inherit a healthy community.
ARISE was dedicated to helping at-risk youth in two ways. First there is a curricula developed for teaching life skills to troubled youth. There is an easy-to-follow lesson plan that helps others teach the skills. Secondly, ARISE provides professional life skills training on how to use these materials in the most effective way. Those who work with the youth are trained in this two-day workshop. ARISE’s mission statement is “To provide valuable ARISE life skills and staff training to at-risk youth and the adults who care for them. We enable youth to achieve their highest potential as law abiding citizens through ARISE group sessions conducted by well trained, caring ARISE Facilitators.” The founders of ARISE have a strong belief that life skills are not born with us, but that they must be taught. With that in mind, they are dedicated to building social and emotional fitness to troubled youth.
The goals of the ARISE program are approached in several different ways. The life skills that they teach are incorporated to help with anger and conflict management, help insist on the importance of getting an education, finding and keeping a job, helping develop self-esteem and healthy living. ARISE believes it is better to get to the youth before the gangs get to them. ARISE prides itself on being able to provide a number of different materials that reach a large age range of youths. It starts at pre-k and goes all the way into young adulthood. Tone of ARISE’s goals are to be able to reach children of all ages and with these programs in place, they are able to do that. Another goal of theirs makes ARISE one of a kind. They are the only known program designed to reach at-risk youth and juvenile offenders with reading difficulties at all ages and provide a comprehensive set of necessary life-skills. The ARISE program is perfect for people looking for a structured program to implement in a gang prevention program. The lessons are also easily added to after school programs, church programs, or any other organization that would like to prevent gang recruitment. Other goals of the Arise program include present solutions to real issues that the youth face every day. The way this is done is to teach them the life skills specific to the issue at hand. Another goal is to let the youth openly express themselves, because it is not always possible in other settings. This helps the youth feel comfortable in participating in the program, it helps the youth feel comfortable with the instructors who are teaching them the life skills, and it shows the youth that there is still a chance at life. Many of the at risk...