100 Black Men of Middle Tennessee, Inc.

Daily Point of Light # 1102 Apr 24, 1998

The 100 Black Men of Middle Tennessee, Inc. is a nonprofit organization comprised of local business and industry leaders whose mission is "to nurture and enhance the growth, development and opportunities for young Black males of Middle Tennessee." The organization was founded in 1991, as an affiliate of the 100 Black Men of America, Inc.

The members of the organization are firm in their belief that students must have guidance in order to realize their full potential. Accordingly, the organization's objectives are to raise the academic standards and social values of its male constituency. To accomplish these objectives, the organization sponsors programs that to provide mentors, tutors, and role models to young males.

Most of the organization's mentoring/tutoring efforts are done through three main programs. The first, Project YES (Youth + Excellence = Success), was started in 1991 as the organization's earliest initiative. This program is designed to enhance the academic success of students (mainly in grades one through four) enrolled in 100 Black Men partner schools. Typically, members and collegiate volunteers serve as educational assistants to teachers and students. Tutorial assistance under this program occurs both during and after school. There is also an eight-week Summer Enrichment Program under this program.

The Victors of Peace Program, the second mentoring program, was created to offer young boys positive alternatives to negative lifestyles. Its objectives are to stimulate responsible behavior, develop leadership skills, and self-esteem. Professionals are invited to partner schools to conduct workshops that promote awareness and informed decision-making. Periodically, participants are treated to overnight retreats and mini-camps for extended sessions.

The third mentoring program, The Collegiate 100, is comprised of male collegians at local universities. These students volunteer to support 100 Black Men sponsored programs. To participate, each student must attend orientation/training sessions on the organization and its programs, proper mentoring and tutoring techniques and the importance of volunteer service.

The most recent effort of 100 Black Men of Middle Tennessee, "Read to Achieve," is designed to inspire students to increase the number of books they read and time spent in the library. This new initiative, launched October 1997 as a part of Make a Difference Day, is intended to encourage boys in grades four through eight to read 10 to 20 books through August 1998. The organization provided more than 60 boys with library cards, grade appropriate reading lists and incentives for reading books. Book reports and oral summaries must be done to verify that books were read, and once approved by a volunteer review committee; prizes such as movie passes, books, school supplies and fast food coupons will be awarded. All students reading more than 20 books will be awarded a plaque and the top three readers will receive savings bonds.

To accomplish its mission, the organization relies on the volunteer support of all persons and groups interested in supporting the mission of the organization and on donations and gifts.