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Vincent, Madrid Represent Greater Austin Area MBK Initiative at the White House

Vice President for Diversity and Community Engagement Dr. Gregory J. Vincent and Austin Hispanic Chamber CEO and UT alumnus  Mark Madrid (BBA, ’95) join President Obama at the White House today to celebrate the accomplishments of the My Brother’s Keeper Initiative (MBK). The Greater Austin Area MBK (GAAMBK), co-chaired by Vincent and Madrid, is one of 16 community initiatives being recognized by the President at the national MBK Summit. In addition to the Summit, Dec. 14 is also the MBK Digital Day of Action.

“It is a great honor to be at the White House again, celebrating the My Brother’s Keeper Initiative, sharing our best practices, and learning from other initiatives,” says Vincent. “Mark and I also look forward to hearing about how the MBK Initiative will continue after President Obama leaves office.”

Dr. Vincent with young men
Dr. Gregory J. Vincent greets students participating in the 2016 SXSWedu Greater Austin Area MBK event.

As representatives of one of the White House’s Top 16 MBK cities, Vincent and Madrid will share the following accomplishments of the GAAMBK from the past year:

  • Collecting data with E3 alliance to identify schools and programs within the Greater Austin Area that have demonstrated success with young males of color
  • Interviewing six middle and high school officials about their successful programs impacting young males of color, in order to implement those strategies at other area schools
  • Holding three community forums including the GAAMBK SXSWedu events
  • Hosting a “College for a Day” program with four middle schools in the Austin area
  • Creating the GAAMBK Mentorship Alliance
  • Impacting over 1,000 students through GAAMBK and Affiliate Programs
  • Reaching over 40,000 residents
  • Aligning resources from over 20 community programs and initiatives
  • Connecting approximately $14,000 worth of school supplies for early education and middle school initiatives
  • Collecting over 4,000 books to be distributed to families with young boys of color
  • Recruiting over 300 GAAMBK volunteers
  • Implementing socio-emotional learning strategies and tools among three- and four-year olds in the Greater Austin Area

“We are pleased with the accomplishments of the Greater Austin Area MBK so far, ” said Vincent, “but we want to expand and scale up efforts to become a national model for boosting academic achievement and the health and well-being of our young men of color as well as elevating their lifetime prosperity.”

According to Vincent,  GAAMBK will continue to work towards this goal through the expansion of services into the surrounding counties that comprise the greater Austin area,  increasing the alignment of resources presently in the community, engaging the for-profit sector in reaching our at-risk youth, and  producing publications that inform and educate the public through best practices and solution-focused strategies.

The MBK Digital Day of Action seeks to attract more mentors throughout the nation through a social media campaign that includes videos, information about mentoring and best practices for mentoring initiatives. Here is a link to one of the videos being promoted nationwide: https://www.whitehouse.gov/my-brothers-keeper