Across America’s underserved urban areas, public school students drop out of school in alarming numbers, and for those that do graduate, the road to post-secondary education is filled with obstacles. Our urban youth experience a lack of opportunity and educational preparedness, growing up in communities of poverty and disempowerment, and with the absence of stable, long-term, committed adult relationships in their lives.
Elevate USA implements a replicable, holistic, and innovative program approach that builds long-term, life-changing relationships with urban youth. Elevate hires teacher-mentors that represent the communities they serve. These teacher-mentors build relationships throughout four program areas, equipping students with the tools they need for success. The accredited classes in school teach 13 vital character qualities and life skills. After school, on weekends and throughout the summer, teacher-mentors spend time mentoring students outside of the classroom, discovering their talents, interests, and hopes for the future, and investing in those interests through activities and time together.
Students also participate in cross-age mentoring where they teach what they have learned to elementary youth. Students in the Adventure Program overcome challenges through growth and develop teamwork and leadership skills year-round. The College and Career program offers resources to students in college planning, career readiness, and interview and test preparation. Together, these four programs address the needs of the WHOLE student.
With Elevate’s guidance, more students are graduating high school and of those that graduate 86 percent enroll in college, technical training, or the military. To date, Elevate has helped thousands of students achieve tremendous academic success.
The Elevate model was founded in Denver, Colorado by Colorado Uplift over 36 years ago and has demonstrated tremendous success that has attracted national attention. After seeing the success of the model, Uplift created a replication program called Elevate USA that launched in 2014. Elevate serves as the national organization helping urban youth by launching new Elevate affiliates while supporting existing affiliates. Elevate programs exist in seven areas: Denver, Orlando, Phoenix, New York City, Indianapolis, New England and Las Vegas. Several others are in the process of affiliation.
Stand Together Foundation Partnership
Elevate USA is a 2017 Stand Together Foundation Catalyst. Through participation in the Catalyst Program, Elevate USA receives training from industry experts in organizational development, branding, measurement and growth, and strategic relationships to amplify their impact and strategically expand their reach.