YOUTH GUIDANCE IN BOSTON
Through a careful mutual selection process with Boston Public Schools (BPS), Youth Guidance launched BAM during the 2017-2018 academic year and committed to bringing Becoming a Man (BAM) to Boston with the goal of improving outcomes for young men at-risk for poor academic outcomes and/or involvement in the juvenile justice system.
The commitment from Mayor Marty Walsh and the Boston School District to support social emotional learning support created a strong foundational start to Boston’s success. In considering the intentionality of the district and the RCT study, Boston became Youth Guidance’s first replication city.
Becoming A Man® program (BAM®) is a school-based group counseling program that guides young men in 6th-12th grades to learn, internalize and practice social cognitive skills, make responsible decisions for their future and become positive members of their school and community.
BAM integrates clinical theory and practice, men’s rites of passage work, and a dynamic approach to youth engagement.
Working On Womanhood (WOW) is a multifaceted, school year-long group counseling and clinical mentoring program.
WOW works to improve social-emotional competencies for girls in 6th-12th grade exposed to traumatic stressors in high risk and under-resourced communities.
Using a trauma-Informed approach, WOW targets young women with significant risk factors for dropout or delinquency such as: teenage pregnancy, trauma, drug or alcohol abuse, self-harm, gang involvement, fighting, academic failure and discipline referrals.
BAM PROGRAM IMPACT
Students enrolled in the BAM Program are:
arrested for violent crime
high school on time
every $1 invested in BAM
WOW PROGRAM IMPACT
*of those starting in the clinical range
that the program has helped them
make better decisions for themselves
Youth Guidance launched BAM in Boston under the local leadership Shawn Brown, a lifelong resident of the City of Boston and a product of the Boston Public Schools system.
In its first year under Brown’s leadership, the program launched into four BPS schools to serve over 150 BAM scholars.
In its fifth year, BAM now serves 11 schools across three school districts, Boston, Cambridge, and Somerville and serving upwards of 550 scholars.
In August 2021, Youth Guidance Working on Womanhood (WOW), an equivalency program for young women, launched in four schools across two districts and have plans to expand into more to serve more youth in the Greater Boston area. Youth Guidance Boston is poised to serve more youth through expansion of programs focused on social emotional support, improving academic opportunities and career exposure and development.
MEET OUR EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
Executive Director | Boston
Shawn Brown joined Youth Guidance as the Executive Director for BAM in Boston in April 2017. He brings a strong passion for mentoring high-risk youth populations and more than 20 years of experience in the fields of youth development and nonprofit leadership in Boston.
In his new role, Brown provides leadership and management for the agency’s new Boston location, which is the first installation of the BAM program outside of the city of Chicago. Working in collaboration with the National BAM Director, Brown engages in long and short-term planning for Boston including the creation of strategic plans, operating strategies, and financial management. He also ensures compliance with grant contracts and licensing agencies, and serves as a catalyst for the growth of BAM by leading fundraising and development efforts in Boston.
Formerly, Brown served as Executive Director of Diamond Educators Mentoring, an organization dedicated to improving academic performance of low-income and at-risk youth, and has established effective partnerships with Boston Public Schools and community providers. Brown received a BA in Sociology from Merrimack College and holds a Nonprofit Management and Leadership Certificate from Boston University’s School of Management.
BOSTON ADVISORY COUNCIL
Youth Guidance’s advisory councils are composed of individuals who are committed to helping students and program participants in their communities. Each council member has a strong desire be actively involved in solving the issues these youth face. Each devotes time, talent and expertise to the current and future work of our local programs.