Ohio State University Researchers Develop Plan to Help Area Youth of Color

A new study by the Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity at Ohio State University, offers a plan to aid underserved youth in the city of Columbus, with a particular emphasis on young men of color. The effort is intended to help expand the work of the city’s My Brother’s Keeper Initiative. President Obama launched the program in 2014 to address the persistent challenges faced by boys and young men of color and find ways to help these boys reach their potential.

According to Kirwan Institute research, 45 percent of the 290,100 youth in Columbus, Ohio, between the ages of 0 and 24 live in neighborhoods that experience high or very high vulnerability. This means youth in those neighborhoods were exposed to continued stressors such as poor performing schools, poverty, inadequate health care and unsafe neighborhood environments. The research found exposure to these stressors can negatively impact high school graduation, household income and life expectancy, and be linked to incidences of violent crime.

Researchers developed an index to understand youth vulnerability in the areas of education, economics, health and safety. They gathered demographic data from the U.S. Census American Community Survey and analyzed it to see where the most vulnerable neighborhoods were and who was living in them. The study also looked at where to find help. Researchers cataloged and mapped the locations of area youth service providers and surveyed those providers on their programs and their ideas for future success.

The full report, Renewing Our Call to Action: A Framework for Eliminating Disparities for Boys and Young Men of Color and Improving Outcomes for All Youth, can be downloaded by clicking here.

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