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Providing Hope for the Future in New Orleans

Volunteers Make Ministries More Effective

[caption id="attachment_5880" align="alignleft" width="300"] Srs. Pat Thomas, Suzanne Brauer, and Ceal Warner at the Peace Center in New Orleans.[/caption] According to a recent study by the Urban League of New Orleans, unemployment for black men in the Queen City is more than 50%. Positive male role models can be hard to find in this area that is still struggling to recover from Hurricane Katrina. Over the past year, however, a partnership between the Dominican Sisters of Peace and a local college service group has offered boys and girls attending the New Orleans Peace Center a glimpse of a brighter future. This past year, Srs. Pat Thomas, Ceal Warner and Suzanne Brauer have partnered with Men on the Move from Xavier University. This group of students, whose motto is “We put the MEN in MENtorship,” is committed to promoting education and responsibility to local African American youth. The members of Men on the Move have chosen to fulfill this commitment by working with the after-school homework help program at the Peace Center. On any given afternoon, you can find them bent over a table next to a child reviewing math homework or spelling words, or outside shooting hoops and playing games with the children. [caption id="attachment_5879" align="alignright" width="300"] Members of Men on the Move and children
from the Peace Center tour Xavier University.[/caption] “These men are more than just volunteers or tutors,” says Sr. Pat. “They are great role models. These are strong, intelligent men working to improve their own futures by getting a quality education, and working to improve the future of the community by setting a positive example.” The Men on the Move have also given the Peace Center afterschool group a glimpse of a positive future by hosting them on a field trip to the campus at Xavier University. The children toured the science building, the chapel, the new campus art building and the library, and shared dinner at the Student Center. “It really is more than just the homework help,” Sr. Pat explained. “It’s the love and attention that these men give to the kids in the afterschool program. These children watch the door all afternoon and can’t wait for them to arrive. The relationships that have been built are really special.” Part of the Center for Student Leadership and Service at Xavier, Men on the Move focuses on mentoring and tutoring middle and high school young men while teaching self-awareness and providing role models for African American youth in New Orleans. If you would like to volunteer with one of our ministries, please click here.   

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