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Today marks one decade of My Brother’s Keeper creating pathways to opportunity and building brighter futures for boys and young men of color

CHICAGO – For ten years, the work of My Brother’s Keeper (MBK)—and now the Obama Foundation’s My Brother’s Keeper Alliance (MBK Alliance)—has been central to President Obama’s efforts to address persistent opportunity gaps facing boys and young men of color.  

Established on February 27, 2014 Opens in a new tab , in the wake of Trayvon Martin’s death, the MBK White House Task Force aimed to address systemic challenges facing boys and young men of color, empowering communities to create pathways to opportunity and brighter futures. Today, under the umbrella of the Obama Foundation, the MBK Alliance continues to lead a cross-sector national call to action focused on building safe and supportive communities for boys and young men of color.

In a new video released today, President Obama reflects on the impact and enduring legacy of MBK in improving the lives of boys and young men of color. 

“One thing I’ve come to appreciate over the last decade is that improving the lives of boys and young men of color is bigger than any one person or group of people,” said President Obama. “It requires everybody – parents, neighbors, teachers, administrators, local governments, and everyone in between, all working together to make a difference. And I’m really proud that My Brother’s Keeper has grown a lot over the last ten years. Right now, over 100 communities are part of the MBK leadership network, and the impact has been pretty amazing.”

Over the past decade, MBK has supported evidence-based programs targeting six key life milestones, ensuring every child has access to quality education and employment opportunities and remains safe from violence. Through strategic partnerships and community engagement, MBK has made significant strides in improving outcomes for young men of color nationwide.

From its inception in the White House to its evolution as a cornerstone program of the Obama Foundation, MBK has spearheaded transformative initiatives and collaborations. MBK is especially proud of establishing the MBK School Success Mentor Initiative Opens in a new tab , the “ Second Chance Pell Opens in a new tab ” pilot program, and the MBK Community Challenge Competition, which has invested in communities making tangible progress in youth development. Today, the MBK Alliance continues its mentoring program, as research shows that young adults who have mentors are 52% more likely to attend school regularly and 55% more likely to attend college. Over the years, the MBK Alliance has empowered individuals like Jerron Hawkins Opens in a new tab , Noah McQueen, and Daniel Fairley II to lead and inspire their communities. Additionally, through initiatives like Freedom Summer 2022 and 2023, the MBK Alliance continues to invest in innovative solutions to keep children safe and engaged during critical times in their development.

“The mission of the My Brother’s Keeper Alliance has always been rooted in making population-level impact to improve the lives of boys and young men of color,” said Adren Wilson, MBK Alliance Executive Director. “Looking ahead to the next ten years, we remain steadfast in our commitments. We aim to inspire and empower the next generation to dream without limitations and to connect them with the tools, opportunities, and resources necessary to turn those dreams into reality. It is only the beginning for MBK. We are excited about our path forward as we head into another decade of progress and impact.”

Looking ahead, the MBK Alliance remains committed to its mission, with a focus on supporting the 100 MBK Communities and the four MBK Model Communities that serve as examples of the successful implementation of evidence-based practices that will improve the lives of boys and young men of color across the country. As President Obama reflects on a decade of progress, he envisions a future where all young men of color have the opportunity to reach their full potential. The MBK Alliance remains steadfast in its commitment to making this vision a reality and looks forward to leveraging the future Obama Presidential Center as a safe space where boys and young men from Chicago and beyond can come together, learn from each other, and find support. 

For more information about the tenth anniversary of MBK, click here Opens in a new tab . For more updates from the MBK Alliance, visit obama.org/my-brothers-keeper-alliance, or follow the Alliance on Facebook Opens in a new tab and Instagram Opens in a new tab .

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Contact: Gloria Nlewedim, [email protected]