BALTIMORE, MD—U.S. Attorney Robert K. Hur on Friday announced awards of $9,380,000 in Department of Justice grants to support mentoring services for youth and to protect children from abuse, exploitation, and threats such as sex trafficking. The awards were made by the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention and the Office for Victims of Crime, part of the Justice Department’s Office of Justice Programs.
“One of the best ways to stop violent crime is to equip young people with the skills necessary to meet the challenges they face,” said United States Attorney Robert K. Hur. “The organizations receiving these funds support youth and provide mentorships and strategies to help them to excel in any situation.”
“Young people in America face an array of challenges, from social and academic pressures to dangerous predators and lethal drugs. They are better equipped to meet those challenges with a model of care and compassion to guide them along,” said Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Katharine T. Sullivan. “These awards will support outstanding youth-serving organizations like the Cal Ripken Sr. Foundation, Big Brothers Big Sisters, Boys and Girls Clubs and their local affiliates across the country as they help youth discover their talents, find their purpose and realize their full potential. We are incredibly grateful to our mentorship programs, both nationally and locally. Badges in Blue and Badges for Baseball are great examples of successful community partnerships through law enforcement and mentoring.”
Friday’s awards in Maryland are part of more than $261 million going to organizations and agencies across the country. Grants from OJP’s Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention will allow national, state and local organizations to provide mentoring to youth who are at risk of juvenile delinquency, victimization and juvenile justice system involvement. Mentoring programs supported by OJJDP help youth make connections with leaders and respected members of their communities, including law enforcement officers. Police and sheriffs’ departments have formed close and lasting bonds with young citizens, leading to greater trust and respect between law enforcement professionals and community members. Grants also address the impact of the addiction crisis on children and teens. Funds support mentoring in rural and other underserved communities hit hard by the opioid epidemic.
In addition, more than 100 sites are receiving grants from OJJDP and OVC to help find missing children, investigate and prosecute child exploitation cases, serve abused and neglected children, and assist minor victims of human trafficking.
The following organizations in Maryland received funding:
- The National 4-H Council received $3 million for national mentoring programs and $1.25 million for statewide and regional mentoring initiatives for youth impacted by opioids and drug addiction;
- The U.S. Dream Academy received $2.3 million, and the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation received $2.23 million for multi-state mentoring programs; and
- The Boys and Girls Clubs of Metropolitan Baltimore received $600,000 for mentoring strategies for youth impacted by opioid and drug addiction.
Additional information about Fiscal Year 2020 grant awards made by the Office of Justice Programs can be found online at the OJP Awards Data webpage.
More information about OJP and its components can be found at www.ojp.gov.