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Durham Strategic Plan Dashboard

Shared Economic

Create a Safer Community Together

Connected, Engaged, and Inclusive Communities

Innovative and High Performing Organization

Thriving and Vibrant Environment

Status Indicator: In Progress | On Hold | Complete/Ongoing

Initiative: 2.12 Partner with educational institutions for outreach to vulnerable youth

Creating a Safer Community Together


This initiative aims to partner with educational institutions to provide support to vulnerable youth. Vulnerable youth, such as those from low-income families, marginalized communities, or facing challenging circumstances, often lack access to quality education and support systems. By collaborating with educational institutions, we can use their expertise, resources, and infrastructure to reach a wider audience of vulnerable youth and offer them opportunities for personal growth, skill development, and academic advancement. This initiative is important as it addresses educational disparities and helps break the cycle of poverty and social exclusion, empowering these young individuals to lead more fulfilling lives and contribute positively to their communities. Additionally, the partnership model ensures a sustainable approach by fostering long-term collaborations between our organization and educational institutions committed to making a lasting impact on the lives of vulnerable youth. 

Key Measures & Data Analysis

 Springtide Research Institute, with permission

  • School-related stress is a major factor in young people's mental health.
  • Schools, and the adults within them, are perfectly positioned to prioritize mental well-being in supportive environments.
  • Focusing on connection, expectations, and purpose can set a foundation for youth mental wellness that helps prevent problems.

Youth Diagnosed with Anxiety or Depression

Why is it important?

This initiative's collaboration with educational institutions will be a transformative force in advancing the objective of reaching and supporting vulnerable youth. The combined effort and expertise will amplify the impact of outreach programs, provide valuable resources, and create a sustainable framework for empowering vulnerable youth to lead more fulfilling and successful lives. 

What have we been doing?

In alignment with our strategic plan, we are progressing with the initiative to partner with educational institutions for outreach to vulnerable youth. Below is an overview of the key actions and steps taken to date:

1. Formation of Team: A dedicated team has been assembled, comprising members from different departments with diverse skills and knowledge. This team will spearhead the initiative's implementation, ensuring a holistic and collaborative approach.

2. Plan Creation: A comprehensive plan is development, outlining the overall strategy, goals, and specific actions required to successfully partner with educational institutions. The plan emphasizes collaboration, inclusivity, and a student-centric approach.

3. Contact with DPS: The team has contacted the Durham Public Schools (DPS) to align our initiative with existing community programs and resources. This collaboration aims to maximize the impact of our outreach efforts and ensure a cohesive support system for vulnerable youth. The schools for participation are Southern High School and Kipp Academy.

4. Identification of Partner Institutions: Efforts have been made to identify and establish partnerships with at least two educational institutions from diverse backgrounds. Preliminary discussions will take place with representatives from Duke University (Duke), North Carolina Central University (NCCU), and Durham Technical Community College (DTCC).

5. Roles, Responsibilities, and Expectations: Clear roles, responsibilities, and expectations are being defined for each partner institution, student participants, and mentors. This ensures transparency, accountability, and effective collaboration throughout the initiative.

6. Comprehensive Needs Assessment: We will actively partner with local colleges, including Duke, NCCU, and DTCC, to conduct a comprehensive needs assessment. This assessment will help us gain insights into the unique challenges and requirements of vulnerable youth in the community.

What's next?

  1. Finalize formal partnerships with Duke, NCCU, and DTCC through memorandum of understanding (MOU) agreements.
  2. Launch the comprehensive needs assessment in collaboration with student volunteers and faculty from the partner institutions.
  3. Develop a tailored outreach program based on the findings of the needs assessment.
  4. Establish a mentorship framework and recruit mentors from the partner institutions.

Budget and Management Services Department
Office of Performance and Innovation
Strategy and Performance Division