Brooklyn, NY- Tonight Brooklyn corporate, nonprofit, entrepreneur and clergy leaders joined Senator Parker at a reception he sponsored on behalf of Brooklyn CARES Circle at Crystal Lounge in the heart of Flatbush and the five-term Senator’s district. Guests listened intently to staggering statistics of a fast-growing number of Black school-aged and teen-aged children falling below the already substandard poverty level. Special guest speaker Susan L. Taylor, CEO and founder of the National CARES Mentoring Movement and editor-in-chief emeritus of Essence magazine imparted to the enrapt attendees how their mentoring endeavor with an already-established youth service organization would dramatically impact these young lives and reverse these chilling facts.
"I grew up in this neighborhood and had resources where I could channel my energy instead of being on the streets, said Senator Parker. “Our children today need this and need to be guided by each of us. We don’t need to look outside this room to help turn things around.” Parker continued. “We are the solution. We need to reclaim the lives of these children because this is a battle we can win,” implored Taylor.
After 37 years at Essence magazine, Ms. Taylor handed the reigns to the next generation so she could devote more time to what has become her passion and more pressing work: organizing CARES Mentor-Recruitment Circles to enlist volunteers and connect them with existing youth-serving organizations. Citing encouraging facts, Ms. Taylor mentioned that mentoring is a low cost, high yield solution to a growing crisis: 98% of young people stay in school; 98% do not become teen parents; 85% do not use drugs, and 98% avoid gang participation. The goal is to connect every at-risk Black youngster with a caring adult through existing youth-service organizations, using the proven-effective one-to-one or group-mentoring models. Every study available shows that mentoring works miracles and can give even our most challenged young people the vision and encouragement they need to heal and build happy, productive, self-sustaining lives.
On hand to meet prospective mentors were the co-chairs of Brooklyn CARES Circle, Monica Dennis and Tamaylia Samms, Chief Operating Officer Wilkes, Ramsey and other committee members. Among the guests were Bishop Eric D. Garnes, Tabernacle of Praise; Pastor Gilford Monrose, Mt. Zion Church of God (7th Day); Stan King, Executive Director, Madison Boy’s & Girls Club; Curtis Nelson, Executive Director, Sesame Flyers International and Hip-Hop icon, Kangol Kid of the legendary rap group U.T.F.O. For more information on how to participate in the National Mentoring Movement, visit http://www.caresmentoring.org/.
About Senator Kevin Parker
Senator Kevin S. Parker is intimately familiar with the needs of his ethnically diverse community that consists of 311,000 constituents in Flatbush, East Flatbush, Midwood, Ditmas Park, Kensington and Borough Park. He is the Ranking Member of the Senate Energy and Telecommunications Committee, former Majority Whip and First Vice Chair for the Association of Black, Puerto Rican and Asian Legislators.
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