"The people at my school, we all feel the same pain, we just don't express it.
We just go through the day like everythings OK.
At Boys to Men, it's OK to let out the anger and tears, because we're all brothers".
We give boys a community of mentors and role models
Boys to Men’s after school mentoring program is an exciting new community based mentoring model that helps teenage boys become men. Every week dedicated Boys to Men mentors show up at middle schools, high schools and foster care facilities to give teenage boys a community of mentors who listen, encourage and believe in them. Instead of telling boys what to do, our mentors admit the mistakes we made at their age, and tell the truth about the struggles we face as men.
75% of the boys in the program are growing up without a father.
Praise from Principals and Counselors
“In my 24 years as a school counselor, I have never witnessed a program as powerful and effective as Boys to Men. I have seen this program make remarkable changes in some of our toughest boys.” Bruce Crenshaw, Counselor, Spring Valley Middle School
“I find words inadequate for describing the profound impact the Boys to Men organization has had on the lives of several of our students. This program has been responsible for the transformation of some of our toughest at-risk youth into individuals. ” Dana Wright,Principal, Spring Valley Middle School
Our High School program is a Proven Success
School records show boys who participated in Boys to Men:
Improved their GPA by an average of 57%.
Reduced their discipline referrals by 79%.
STAYED in school. Boys to Men students had a 0% dropout rate. (The school dropout rate was 35.5%.)
Group Mentoring Program Overview
In 2009, Boys to Men began an after school group mentoring program in San Diego targeting “at-risk” middle and high school school boys. Program elements include weekly site based meetings of mentors and boys, a Boys Adventure Weekend, and ongoing training and support for carefully selected and screened mentors.
The group aspect of the weekly meetings gives boys access to a variety of male role models. These mentors show up consistently, tell the truth about our struggles as men, ask the boys what kind of man they want to be, praise them for their unique gifts, support them when they screw up, and encourage them to become that good man they all want to be.
The meetings combine learning, fun, leadership opportunities, peer mentoring and self-esteem building exercises. Every meeting begins with a mentor sharing his personal story about that week’s topic. He talks about the lessons he learned, and the long-term consequences of his actions. The mentor does not teach or lecture, he just tells his story. This approach builds a connection and trust that allows boys and men to talk openly about the challenges in their lives and support each other in our journey to become better men.
When we invest in our boys, and support them at this critical time, the payback will last a lifetime!
Group Discussion Topics
How does peer pressure affect you? Have you ever gone with the crowd to be accepted?
What is your dream? What are you doing or not doing to achieve that dream?
What kind of man do you want to be? What will you need to do to become that man?
What masks do you wear to hide what is really going on inside you?
What are you most proud of? What have you done that you are not proud of?
Do you ever lie? Who do you lie to? What is the payback? Is it worth it?
Have you ever been bullied or been the bully?
It's My Turn to Give Back
The safety of our boys is our first priority. Each potential mentor is interviewed and screened by BTM leadership and must pass a School District background check prior to his acceptance into the program. All mentors must attend the Reclaiming Your Teenage Fire Mentor Training. Experienced, trained BTM leaders facilitate this 24-hour residential training, the Boys Adventure Weekend, and all weekly mentoring sessions. The group mentoring aspect further adds to our program's safety by allowing us to monitor and evaluate the mentor's interactions with boys.