Our Signature Program

Rites Of Passage

 

We provide tools for youth in custody and mentors them to develop a new way of living after their release.

A Second Chance

Rites of Passage

This in not just a program, it’s a proven way out of a destructive lifestyle into a new way of living. Rites of Passage is supporting young men across the bridge of success to become a part of the community that welcomes, mentors, and loves them and celebrates their achievement.


If you believe that…

  • Incarcerated youth deserve a second chance,
  • Black and Brown boys / young men matter, and
  • Role modeling, mentorship, and community support can transform a young man’s life,

…then you’ll want to know more our The Rites of Passage (ROP) program. We provide tools for youth in custody and mentors them to develop a new way of living after their release. 200+ have graduated to new lives. 

The ‘system’ is generally not supportive of youths of color:

  • Youths of color are 3X more likely to be expelled or suspended from school than whites.
  • They are 5X more likely to be in a juvenile detention facility (youth prison).
  • In California, the disparity is 9X.
  • African Americans are incarcerated at 5X the rate of whites.

The school to prison pipeline starts early. Frequently boys and young men of color do not have positive male role models, nor engaged fathers. Many are impacted by violence within the home.

The Rites of Passage (ROP) program works with youth in juvenile facilities. 98% of them are of color. ROP provides intensive weekly group sessions within the Department of Juvenile Justice during a 14-16 week program. We offer rituals, traditions, and practices to strip away old habits, thinking and behaviors.

The ROP difference
We develop and maintain deeply rooted relationships with the young men. The Reentry/Aftercare case management and life coaching services create an extension of vital support connecting the young men back into the community. The services support the young men, their families and other stakeholders. An infrastructure of support is critical for successful transformation.

One of the highlights of this program for years is our ability to bring together current gang rivals under the umbrella of Rites of Passage as the one family that loves and supports one another’s growth and development.

To date ROP has run 21 cohorts at facilities in the Greater San Francisco Area. With YOUR SUPPORT we are striving to expand the Program and services to more incarcerated youth. They desperately need and deserve a second chance.

How Your Donation Will Be Used

We are reaching out to cover a portion of our program costs as we seek to affect the lives of more boys and young men. Our plan is to broaden our offering to more incarcerated youth and to deepen our relationships with young men in the program, their community, and with government officials responsible for programs in juvenile detention facilities. Program costs include staffing to run the workshops, guest speakers, materials and a graduation ceremony. It also includes on-going support for mentoring the young men after they get out and reenter life on the outside. Finally, it includes the working with the community of people that are part of the lives of the young men.

BACKGROUND: Rites of Passage (ROP) was started in a local church by Kelvin Potts in 2013. After having had the experience of healing and transformation through the group process himself, Kelvin knew it could help others. In 2016 the Program was moved to the Department of Juvenile Justice in San Leandro, CA where it works with boys and young men in custody.

The STAFF: The program facilitators include formerly incarcerated men from the same walks of life that these young men are struggling to manage. The facilitators are skilled trainers in working with and mentoring at risk youth and most importantly are able to authentically relate to these boys and young men as role models and mentors.

The PLAN: New classes will be launched this year within the Juvenile Hall of Justice. In the age of corona virus, the program will be adapted to Zoom. As always, we anticipate that the young men in the program will all be Black or Brown.

This in not just a program, it’s a proven way out of a destructive lifestyle into a new way of living. Rites of Passage is supporting young men across the bridge of success to become a part of the community that welcomes, mentors, and loves them and celebrates their achievement.

In the words of Jahlil:, a 2014 ROP graduate: “If the decision were up to me, I’d put this progam in institutions around the world. I now think a lot more before I react to things. This program has made becoming a man equivalent to becoming rich. In a way, we do become rich … in mind, body and spirit.”

Get In Touch

4 + 10 =

Positive Communication Practices
1720 Broadway, 2nd Floor
Oakland, CA 94612
(510) 917-1505
info@positivepractices.net