Mentoring Programs & Staff, Volunteer Mentors, Caring Adults and Community Organizations

The Essentials Training

The Essentials Training: A Curriculum for People Who Mentor Black Young Men & Boys


Framing & Purpose

The framing of this curriculum is intentional in its focus on young Black men and boys. Even the choice of words, men and boys vs. males, was done to make it clear that (1) this training is rooted in a specific racial and gender lens, and (2) it is important to recognize the mentee’s humanity by speaking about young Black men and boys using their personhood (“boys and young men”), and not their biological function (“males”). The language throughout the training and curricula thus works to ensure that those who provide the training and receive it are part of the narrative re-shaping that must occur in all mentoring relationships with young Black men and boys. The guiding purpose of the training is to go one step beyond “cultural humility” and strengthen the practices of those who mentor young Black men and boys, incorporating voices from practitioners and researchers.

Structure & Objectives 
The modules are structured to enable mentors to thoughtfully navigate a series of facilitated critical conversations on the issues of race, class, and privilege. In addition, facilitators will share tools, insights, and lessons learned designed to enhance the humility of mentors working with young Black men in their programs. The training objectives are to: ·         

  • Move mentors beyond cultural humility and towards the integration of critical consciousness for both the mentor and the young Black men that they mentor.·         
  • Build the capacity of mentors to meet their mentees “where they are” while also embracing existing natural (informal), familial, and societal structures to support the mentor-mentee relationship.·         
  • Gain a greater understanding of key research and approaches to developing a critical consciousness model into their mentoring approach with the young Black men they mentor.


Sessions are currently being done virtually.  You must be registered to attend.

Space is limited.  Registration will close once the training is full or 2 days before the scheduled session.  

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