The KidStart Mentoring Program has been an important part of PLEA for many years. It started because it was recognized that preventive services were needed for kids beginning to experience challenges in their lives. They needed someone they could count on.
The young people KidStart helps may be having difficulty thriving due to problems at home, complications at school, problems with peers or in the community.
They are in need of somebody to show them the way and engage them in activities that encourage success and a sense of achievement. KidStart is designed specifically to create the conditions necessary to help kids connect with the community and flourish in spite of challenging circumstances.
Young people are referred to the program by the people in their lives who see their need such as teachers, social workers, school counselors, parents or guardians, police and probation officers. The need is great and the waiting list is long.
KidStart works because it provides early intervention and equips young people with the building blocks vital for positive and productive lives. KidStart is fundamentally preventative, rooted in the belief that early engagement with an adult mentor brings significant and long lasting benefits for the whole community.