Paul's Place Youth Program helps students of all ages

BALTIMORE - Crystal Taylor and Leisha Thompson are mentors with a Youth Program run by Paul's Place.  These Augusta Fells Savage Institute of Visual Arts students mentor elementary and middle schoolers.

"We offer opportunities that students may not get through their regular school day activities.  We also  try to encourage learning and enhance creative learning and give them internship opportunities," said Tissa Thomas, Youth Program Coordinator.

The Youth Program focuses on helping students stay in school, succeed academically and prepare for employment and college.  

Crystal was not always on the right track, but currently she is planning for college and a career as a massage therapist.

She wants to make sure she helps others stay focused.

"It makes me feel happy to help others because I was in that position.  I was a problem student, but I thought I want  to get out of here.  I don't want my students to cut class and be a problem," said Crystal Taylor, a junior.

The mentors help students with homework and lend an ear when necessary to give back in the community.

"It's actually been a great experience being able to work with younger kids, mentor them and help with school activities.  I like being a role model for kids younger than me," said Leisha Thompson, a senior.

Administrators say it's a win win for everyone involved.

"They have an opportunity to give back by going out to mentor young girls to help them achieve their goals the same way they want to achieve their goals in high school," said Tracy Hicks, Principal of Augusta Fells Savage Institute of Visual Arts High School.

Paul's Place is a community Outreach Center located in Pigtown.  The center runs the Youth Program to help inner city kids succeed in life.

The Youth Program began in February 2007.


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