ANNAPOLIS, MARYLAND, MAY 21, 2019 — On June 7th, 2019 Mentor Foundation USA will host a Scholarship Award Ceremony at the Historic Baldwin Hall, 1358 Millersville Rd, Millersville, MD 21108. This event will celebrate eight ‘Youth Ambassadors’ from Glen Burnie, Old Mill, and Northeast high schools who have been awarded a combined $260,000 in scholarships from the SFIG Foundation, which will be distributed over the course of their academic studies. These students have been awarded The SFIG Foundation scholarship as part of their engagement in Mentor Foundation USA’s ‘Living the Example’ (LTE) program. The SFIG Foundation and Scholarship America have partnered to provide educational opportunities for underserved youth who have successfully participated in Mentor Foundation USA’s programs. “We are so excited to a part of these very impressive students’ higher education journey. We look forward to seeing all that they will accomplish and hopefully continue to give back to their communities,” says Sairah Burki, Executive Director of the SFIG Foundation. Twin brothers and ‘Youth Ambassadors’ Jeremy and Joshua Dawidowicz from Northeast High School in Pasadena were each awarded the full $40,000 scholarship. They both plan on attending the University of Maryland Baltimore County.
The ‘Living the Example’ (LTE) program is an innovative peer-to-peer driven drug prevention and education program that engages students as messengers, “Youth Ambassadors,” urging their friends to enjoy healthy and productive lives free from substance use. They also drive school-wide “change projects.”
This program, developed and implemented by Mentor Foundation USA in partnership with the George Washington University, has shown promising results in terms of shifting students’ attitudes away from drugs and their intent to use. Read the published pilot evaluation in JMIR Mental Health. This innovative program is made possible by the generous support from: Anne Arundel County Department of Health, Conrad N. Hilton Foundation, Second Genesis Foundation, and with the coordination and collaboration efforts from Anne Arundel County Public Schools.
Anne Arundel County, Maryland had the third highest number of deaths from drugs and alcohol for the state of Maryland in 2018, after Baltimore City and Baltimore County. The dramatic impact of drugs and alcohol led Anne Arundel to seek innovative new ways to address this crisis and protect and educate their youth. To that end, the new “Living the Example” program was adopted and piloted in three Anne Arundel County High Schools for the 2018/2019 academic year.
Mentor Foundation USA is a member affiliate of Mentor International, which was founded in 1994 by Her Majesty Queen Silvia of Sweden and the World Health Organization. Mentor is the largest network of its kind for evidence-based programs that prevent substance use among youth. Collectively, Mentor has implemented projects in over 80 countries, impacting more than 6 million youth. Mentor is now represented in the USA, Sweden, Denmark, Latvia, Lithuania, Germany, the UK, and has regional offices in Lebanon serving 22 Arab countries.