Youth Leadership Development
A unique, innovative, youth leadership intensive; that defines your
fostering a civic engagement service learning club.
As a proud member of The Denver Foundation’s prestigious Executive Directors of Color
Institute (EDCI), Ta’Rell Burton Sr. is committed to strengthen the collective work of the
Denver Metropolitan nonprofit sector in and beyond the field of philanthropy.
All A True Change program/initiative were restructured to enforce the progression and advancement of
The Denver Foundation’s core values of community member, constituent engagement and racial equity.
The Purpose Initiative (TPI) is a youth leadership development intensive that provides progressive levels of community support and supervision for at-risk youth by fostering civic engagement and learning opportunities for participating youth. The participants develop leadership skills by running a student-led organization that provides its members with opportunities to serve, build character and develop leadership. During each session, student led meetings are held to plan projects, develop funding or fundraising strategies, while holding elected leadership positions within their club.
Antoinette Gomez Cultivates a weekly therapeutic, educational approach to assist in self-discovery, self-understanding, and helps define and distinguish their self-purpose. (purpose within)
On site services are provided and or facilitated by an Antoinette Gomez, Licensed Clinical Social Worker, Certified Addictions Counselor III. Each Friday, licensed therapeutic groups and activities vary throughout the year and cover topics such as conflict resolution, anger management, and impact on victims, self-esteem, peer pressure, substance abuse and more.
Ta’Rell Burton Sr. and Samuel Singleton Sr. present one-on-one mentoring services and gang-task intervention to at-risk youth in need of positive adult role modeling and social skill development. This structured framework is designed especially for minority boys of color and presented each Friday to identified youth in need.
(As a 2018 My Brother’s Keeper Initiative (MBK25) award inductee, Executive Director Ta’Rell Burton Sr. recognizes the severity of educational opportunities for minority boys of color. Ta’Rell advocates and facilitates groundwork in support of the My Brother’s Keeper Initiative)
Activities, snacks, enrichment programs, private reading time, homework assistance, and tutoring is provided regularly. Special events are scheduled monthly and include guest speakers, movie nights, and arts and crafts. Parent connection meetings and individualized life skills instruction is available year-round.
Several community collaborative efforts contribute to the success of The Purpose Initiative.
The vision of the Purpose Initiative:
Intensive youth leadership development training, and service learning club for urban at-risk youth. The design embeds and instills initiative within each student while demonstrating civic engagement and fostering pro-social skills to maneuver and maintain a purpose driven life.
The Purpose Initiative Club is delivered in 3-4 day per week; 120-minute sessions. The Purpose Initiative Club can be implemented in 6-12th grade students as a civic engagement organizational club.
Each Friday is reserved for a strategic, innovative, juvenile therapeutic diversion facilitated by Antoinette Gomez, LSCW, CACIII.
Individualized prevention/intervention mentoring services is offered to qualified youth in need.
Licensed Therapist are available to the participants 24 hours a day through a phone application platform.
What research is the Purpose Initiative Club based on?
All A True Change program/initiative were restructured to enforce the progression and advancement of The Denver Foundation’s core values of community member, constituent engagement and racial equity.
Our youth leadership development framework is grounded in two perspectives that are the foundation for our comprehensive approaches: The National Center for Learning and Civic Engagement, (NCLCE) the population-based classification system developed by the Institute of Medicine (IOM), and the risk and protective factor theory.
The National Center for Learning and Civic Engagement (NCLCE) covers the innovative structural framework for the development of youth community leaders.
The organizational “Club” structure of The Purpose Initiative supports the NCLCE’s objective to restore the civic mission within schools and the community, by fostering civic learning and engagement opportunities for youth participants.
The IOM classification covers three broad and targeted interventions, including:
Universal preventive interventions: health promotion activities targeted to the general public or whole population group not identified based on individual risk.
Selective preventive interventions: early intervention activities targeted to individuals or a subgroup of the population whose risk of developing a disorder is significantly higher than average.
Indicated preventive interventions: targeted activities for individuals in high-risk environments who are identified as having minimal but detectable symptoms foreshadowing disorder or biological markers indicating
For many high-risk children and adolescents, a window of opportunity may exist for preventive interventions to alter life trajectories in positive ways.
However, there is no simple way to do this without more active community leadership that promotes positive youth development.
How is the effectiveness of the Purpose Initiative Club evaluated?
Our Therapist provides intensive intervention and structure based on each child’s individual needs. Surveys are sent at the beginning and end of the school year to the parents and teachers of each student. We are supplied with each student test scores (Benchmark Test) and grades at the start and end of the school year. We also evaluate a monthly behavioral report outlining the student’s emotional and behavioral status. This method is combined with a daily accredited educational based service learning activity. All data is documented daily into our program software designed to track attendance, outline goals, and instantly provide measured outcomes. Our cloud-based customized software provides proof of their rapid progress and growth. This system serves as validation of our ability to verify our program’s quantifiable statistics while providing at-risk youth life skills to deal with gang recruitment, violence, and community engagements within the impoverished neighborhood they live in.
Open Door Youth Gang Alternatives had 45 students enrolled in their Academic Charter Education After-School Program (ACE) at the beginning of the 2015-2016 school years. By the end of the school year, only 15 children remained in the program; there were no documented results of growth or quantifiable statics. At the beginning of the next school year; 2016-2017, Kisha Burton took on the task of the Program Manager. Mrs. Burton’s goal was to increase the attendance rate of each student while demonstrating rapid growth in academics and a decrease in disciplinary actions. After designing and implementing the structure-based method discussed above, she was able to document the following improvements; dramatic reduction in disciplinary referrals, suspension rates, truancy, and significant improvement in academic achievement. By the end of the school year there were 54 students in the program with documented quantifiable statistics to prove the success of the program implementation. 80% of the participants of the ACE program improved their grades by 2 letter grades and made a 65% overall test score increase. Kisha Burton currently serves as the Co-Founder/Community Compliance Director for A True Change non-profit organization. She has taken the program format she created for the ACE program and enhanced it, with the direction of Ta’Rell Burton Sr. to document and display proof of the successful results of the Purpose Initiative Club.
Enroll your youth today! Get class scheduling & updates (ages 12-17)
Flippin’ the Script
Bridging the gap between release and reality
A True Change will help fill an urgent community need to facilitate a community-based program that address and alleviates the devastating effects of escalating gang activity and violence.
The program’s individualized plans offer assistance in the areas of housing, employment skills and job readiness, transportation, money management, mentoring, family relationships, and support systems.