Posted February 28, 2014 by Unique in Politics

President Obama Launches Initiative To Focus On Young Boys & Men Of Color [Video][Details]

On July 19, 2013 President Obama told the people of America that:

 There are a lot of kids out there who need help, who are getting a lot of negative reinforcement. And is there more that we can do to give them the sense that their country cares about them and values them and is willing to invest in them?

Seven months later Obama launches a community initiative that will focus on helping young minority boys and men succeed and avoid violence, entitled ‘My Brothers Keeper.

Backed by $200 million in philanthropic pledges the program, which was launched on Wednesday, will bring together private philanthropies, businesses, governors, mayors, faith leaders, and nonprofit organizations that are committed to helping empower boys and young men of color to succeed.

The President also signed a presidential memorandum directing the federal government to determine the best methods to improve the odds for young men of color. With a “My Brother’s Keeper Task Force” being implemented under the direction of Cabinet secretary, Broderick Johnson. Obama also stress that the program will take a community effort:

[I]n this effort, government cannot play the only — or even the primary — role. We can help give every child access to quality preschool and help them start learning from an early age, but we can’t replace the power of a parent who’s reading to that child. We can reform our criminal justice system to ensure that it’s not infected with bias, but nothing keeps a young man out of trouble like a father who takes an active role in his son’s life. 

In other words, broadening the horizons for our young men and giving them the tools they need to succeed will require a sustained effort from all of us. Parents will have to parent — and turn off the television, and help with homework. Teachers will need to do their part to make sure our kids don’t fall behind and that we’re setting high expectations for those children and not giving up on them. Business leaders will need to create more mentorships and apprenticeships to show more young people what careers are out there. Tech leaders will need to open young eyes to fields like computer science and engineering. Faith leaders will need to help our young men develop the values and ethical framework that is the foundation for a good and productive life.

So we all have a job to do. And we can do it together — black and white, urban and rural, Democrat and Republican.  

Check out the full launch speech below.


[White House]