THE YOUNG LIONS AT RISK MALE YOUTH
KICKS OFF A NEW YEAR
October 3, 2012, SOUTH ORANGE, NJ -Eternal Light Community
Development Corporation (ELCDC), established by First Baptist of South Orange, NJ,
has been awarded a grant from the Office of Faith Based Initiatives, New Jersey
Department of State, in support of its “Young Lions Rights of Passage Program.”
The Young Lions Rites of Passage Program was created for young men ages 12-16
to prepare them for adulthood by developing their world view through the
exploration of self-awareness, purpose, critical thinking and education.
On October 13, 2012 at Columbia High School, Maplewood, NJ, beginning at 11:00 am,
the Young Lions will host its 2012-2013 kickoff to provide an opportunity for
students, parents and the community to learn more about the program. All are
invited and encouraged to attend.
A total of 70 teens and pre-teens, all residents of South Orange and Maplewood,
will be serviced under the Young Lions Rites of Passage Program. One of its primary
goals is to mentor youth facing social and academic challenges in the district.
“In previous years, The Young Lions program has successfully mentored and
graduated young men from the townships,” says Leah Dade, executive director for
Eternal Light. “We are thrilled that the state grant will allow for expansion
of our program and its reach within the community.”
The Young Lions Rites of Passage Program assists adolescent young men as they work through
finding healthy solutions for the complicated issues they face, and builds upon
the development and learning of critical social skills and positive decision
making strategies. Additionally, the program
offers a conducive environment for youth to learn best practices for effective communication
and problem solving. Developing a greater sense of identity and connection to
their community are also part of the experience.
Youth who successfully complete the program participate in a Rites of Passage weekend
wilderness trip that will test learned skills and the youths’ ability to apply
them. At the close of the program, the young men along with their peers and
family members will participate in a structured Rites of Passage ceremony to
capture and mark their understanding of self awareness in the greater
If you’d like to refer a student, become a mentor, or donate to the program,
please contact Leah Dade, executive director, Eternal Light, CDC at
973-985-6363 or visit www.Eternalight.org.