April 17, 2013
For Immediate Release
Macon At-Risk Teens Graduate Powerful 12-Week Coaching Program
ODB provides at-risk teens professional life plan/educational achievement coaching
MACON – Forty at-risk teens from the Macon/Bibb County area are completing two intense 12-week coaching programs provided by Orange Duffel Bag (ODB), a 501c3 public charity. Now in its third year, the evidence-based, afterschool program is built on the 7 Rules for the Road from the multi-award winning book My Orange Duffel Bag: A Journey to Radical Change.
Once a week at Middle Georgia State College, at-risk teens from Bibb County and Macon high schools have engaged in afterschool sessions with seasoned executive coaches. The coaches, assisted by a family of advocates, work with students to help them realize their passions, create a comprehensive life plan, set and achieve meaningful goals, and learn strategies to overcome obstacles and stay focused on achieving their education.
During a moving and celebratory graduation, each teen who successfully completes the program receives a well-earned orange duffel bag and a laptop to help further her or his education and gain employment. Post graduation, youth advocates continue assisting students with academic/career goals.
ODB’s local partners in this strategic effort include Middle Georgia State College, Macon Chamber of Commerce, Bibb County Schools, Cox Media, The Mentors Project, Peyton Anderson Foundation, Twin Cedars and Georgia Power. “It’s often said we need to invest in our future’s most valuable resource, Georgia’s kids,” says Michael Daly, ODB President. “Macon shares that passion and has a clear vision to improve the education success rates of Macon’s homeless teens and youth in foster care. Together we are making a long lasting, positive and measurable impact on Bibb County’s future economy.” ODB Classes are also graduating this month in Atlanta and future classes are scheduled for Marietta, Atlanta and in Macon again this summer. By year end ODB will have graduated more than 250 Georgia high school teens, each armed with a comprehensive life and education plan. Statewide partners include USG Board of Regents College Access Challenge Grant, Xerox Georgia, POS World, Staples and Zaxby’s.
ODB’s model and success is based on a “collaborative approach to achieve collective impact” notes ODB’s Board Chair Echo Garrett. ODB was co-founded in 2010 by authors Sam Bracken and Garrett. Bracken was once a homeless teen who earned a Georgia Tech football scholarship and became a successful executive. His story of triumph over adversity is the basis of the program. Visit www.theODBi.org or email [email protected] for more information. ODB’s program is free to youth.
Contact: Diana Black: 770-845-9800, [email protected]