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For Immediate Release
Office of the First Lady
October 27, 2005

Fact Sheet: A Commitment to Helping America's Youth
White House Conference Empowers Communities; Launches New Web-Based Guide

The White House Conference On Helping America's Youth

On October 27, Mrs. Laura Bush Will Convene The White House Conference On Helping America's Youth At Howard University In Washington, DC. More than 500 parents, civic leaders, faith-based and community service providers, foundations, educators, researchers, and experts in child development will gather to discuss various problems facing America's youth and solutions shown to be successful in overcoming those challenges.

A New Guide to Support Community Efforts to Improve the Lives of Youth

The Interactive Guide Will Support Community Partnerships. The new guide will assist community partnerships in their collaborative efforts to prioritize issues, identify existing resources, and fill gaps or unmet needs with effective programs.

The New Guide Will Be Free Of Cost For Communities And The Online Platform Will Facilitate Good Strategic Planning That Allows The Efficient And Effective Use Of Available Resources. By identifying needs and available resources, community leaders can integrate existing Federal and local programs, as well as volunteer faith-based or community programs, to create seamless efforts serving local youth.

The Community Guide To Helping America's Youth Reflects The Most Up-to-Date Research On Youth Development And Effective Programs. The guide was developed by the U.S. Departments of Health and Human Services, Justice, Education, Agriculture, Labor, Housing and Urban Development, and the Interior; the Office of National Drug Control Policy; and the Corporation for National and Community Service. Departmental contributors were chosen for their expertise in adolescent health, youth development, juvenile delinquency prevention, substance abuse prevention, mental health, and disabilities.

A Commitment To America's Youth

The President And Mrs. Bush Believe Every American Has The Opportunity To Help Children And Youth To Avoid Trouble And Lead More Hopeful Lives. In his 2005 State of the Union Address, the President announced "a broader outreach to at-risk youth, which involves parents and pastors, coaches and community leaders, in programs ranging from literacy to sports." He asked Laura Bush to lead this effort, which became known as Helping America's Youth.

Background: America's Youth Are At Risk

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