Between 1993 and 2000, staff at the National Mentoring Partnership Incorporated, Alexandria, Va., developed and implemented a project designed to discourage high-risk urban youth from engaging in health-damaging behavior and to encourage them to pursue activities geared toward a productive future.
The project, PATHWAYS Initiative® included personal and economic mentoring, life skills training, entrepreneurial training and short-term and long-term economic incentives.
Participants agreed to meet regularly with a mentor; remain involved in the program; refrain from using illegal drugs, including, for minors, alcohol and tobacco; and graduate from high school. Financial incentives included $50 quarterly dividend checks and up to $10,000 in equity plus accrued interest upon completion of the program.
Over the grant period, project staff:
Under a subcontract the Urban Institute, Washington, conducted three evaluations during the course of the project. Among the findings it reported were the following: