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New and Innovative Teen Trendsetter Program

Wayne Metropolitan Community Action Agency (Wayne Metro) is pleased to announce that it has been selected as a recipient of a grant from the Barbara Bush Foundation to implement the new and innovative Teen Trendsetter program. A nation-wide initiative, Wayne Metro is one of only a few organizations selected for this award. 

Teen Trendsetters is a hands-on, reading mentorship program offered to children in the first, second and third-grades. Young readers are paired with a teen volunteer for a period of six months to assist them in gaining a greater understanding of the sciences. Mentoring sessions happen twice weekly under the supervision of an adult. 

At the end of the six month program, the goal is that mentees will have advanced their reading level by one academic year. Data shows that the teen mentors also benefit from participating in the program – with a 98 percent graduation rate compared to the national average of 81 percent (2011-2012 school year, National Center for Education Statistics). 

Louis Piszker, Wayne Metro CEO, stated, “The Teen Trendsetter program expands upon our current partnership with the Barbara Bush Foundation that has helped to create three Centers for Family Literacy in Wayne County.  This program will allow Wayne Metro to further engage young students, and also help to create leadership skills in young adults.”

With funding received from the Barbara Bush Foundation in 2012, Wayne Metro successfully implemented an award-winning family literacy program based in the community of Hamtramck, Michigan. Wayne Metro’s Literacy Education and Parenting Success (LEAPS) Family Literacy Program offers GED and ESL classes to low-income families and helps parents learn how to support their children's school readiness while they are also learning themselves. Due to the success of the program, the Barbara Bush Foundation increased the level of funding to seed additional LEAPS sites in the City of Detroit. These sites are located in Brightmoor, Cody Rouge and Highland Park.  All of these sites are currently enrolling new participants.  

Adding to an already established family literacy program funded and run by Wayne Metro in collaboration with Don Bosco Hall, Wayne Metro’s first Teen Trendsetters program is set to launch in spring of 2015. Additional Teen Trendsetter initiatives will be created housed in various Wayne Metro sites throughout Wayne County.

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