Youth Impact Program Begins Fourth Year At USC

June 29, 2009

Riki Ellison, Chairman and Founder of the Youth Impact Program and a three-time Super Bowl winner with the San Francisco 49ers and a USC alumnus, announced that the Youth Impact Program begins today (June 29) at the University of Southern California for its fourth year.

It is one of the nation's most innovative 'at risk' programs for the community of Los Angeles. The Youth Impact Program (YIP) invests in 'at risk' below-the-poverty-line young boys from 9- to 12-years-old in a 5-week intensive program using USC facilities, staff, student athletes and local elementary teachers. Student-athletes participating from USC include Rhett Ellison, Aaron Corp, Justin Hart, Travon Patterson, Ronald Johnson, C.J. Gable, Shane Horton and Marshall Jones.

The program provides food, clothing, transportation, mathematics, language arts, football, and life skills development and includes Anger Management, Conflict Resolution, Drug Education and permanent mentoring relationships between the boys and local teachers, staff and student-athletes of USC.

Local Congresswoman Diane E. Watson (D-33) has been an advocate and champion of this educational effort in Los Angeles and in the U.S. Congress.

This joint community effort that invests about $1,000 in each boy is changing their lives at a critical formative age. If not changed, national statistics show a good portion of urban 'at risk' boys end up in prison if not attended to, which would cost the community about $36,000 a year for incarceration costs.

The Youth Impact Program at USC uses football to attract the young boys to come in off of the streets in the summer, and it exposes them to the University and its support structure in their community. Support of the Youth Impact Program is provided by USC and the NFL Youth Football Fund.

It is an integrated partnership between the local community, USC, the municipality of Los Angeles and the NFL to make a difference in the lives of young minority urban at-risk boys that will change our communities for the better.

The program is a national program, with additional sites in Houston, New Orleans and Tampa. The Youth Impact Program has received a Joint Congressional Resolution for its achievements.

The YIP program runs through the month of July with a year-round program to follow, where the boys will continue to be monitored and mentored on a monthly basis at USC.

For more information on the program contact Riki Ellison, YIP Chairman and Founder at 703-778-6192 or Mike Terrill at 602 885-1955. The YIP website is located at

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