Mentoring Programs to Assist Maywood Youth
Times vary for the mentoring programs, contact the office.
- Free Youth Breakfast - first Saturday of every month, 200 S. 5th Avenue, 9:00am - 11:00am (door open at 8:30am). Guest speakers share positive life-skills information, and other youth activities as planned.
The mentoring programs offer: Junior Achievement, tutoring, field trips, etc. For more information, please contact: Barbara Cole, Director 708-344-3577.
Prepared by Dr. Wylmarie N. Sykes, Chairman, Operation Safe Child
The following is information designed to empower young people to make wise choices regarding their future and their association with gangs. This information is especially important for young members of the Maywood community.
Facts to Consider Before Joining a Gang
- A person that joins a gang can expect to be picked up by police and arrested within six months of joining a gang.
- People are asked to join gangs in order for the gang to make money off of them. People are recruited to join gangs so that gangs can put them out on the street to sell illegal drugs.
- Drug pushers do not earn big money. People on the street selling drugs earn about $3.50 per hour. By contrast, workers at Wal-Mart and McDonalds earn $7.25 to $8.00 per hour. In other words, the lowest paid legal workers earn twice as much as illegal drug pushers and they don't have to go to jail for what they do.
- Wearing a hat backward and tilted to one side is a gang sign and can get a person beaten up or shot because he or she is showing the wrong gang signs. So, it just makes sense to wear your hat straight and your pants up.
- Gangs tend to recruit people who drop out of school or who are loners or who have been abused and who are very angry. If this describes how you are feeling, seek help. A lot of people care about you and how you are feeling. The gangs don't care. They just want to use you.
- People who join gangs give away their future opportunities. They go to jail, get prison records, and then are prevented from getting good paying jobs.
- Joining a gang causes trouble for your entire family. Think about what your actions mean to your brothers and sisters, your parents and your grandparents.
- Gang members and drug pushers have to pay lawyers, bail and could lose whatever legitimate job they might currently hold.
- If a gang member and drug pusher starts using drugs, then they begin to poison their body and their minds - which diminishes their ability to think clearly and to make positive, life-affirming decisions.
- If a girl joins a gang, several things are likely to happen to her. A girl gang member can expect to become a paid or unpaid prostitute. She can expect to become pregnant and might not know who the father is. She can expect to get a sexually transmitted disease (also known as an STD), including Herpes and AIDS, which are incurable. She can expect to spend years in jail and remain poor for most of her life.
Surprisingly, boys who join gangs can expect the same outcomes.
There are Better Choices Than Gangs
- Make friends with good people who will not drag you down, but who will help you up.
- Stay in school. Attend school every day. Get into after school activities and sports. Study.
- Learn skills. Learn a trade - one you will enjoy.
- Go to college. College graduates can earn as much as $2,000,000 more in income over a life-time than a non-college educated individual. The more education you get, the more you are likely to earn.
- Get a job and then be a dependable worker. The more people can depend upon you, the more likely you are to stay employed
- Be honest. Practice good-character habits. Be grateful. Focus on the positive. Worship.
- Always try to do the right thing.
Remember, people who do wrong pay for it a long time and pay for doing wrong in many more ways than what they might have ever imagined. A prison term is not the only punishment that can come from doing wrong.
The Mission of Operation Safe Child
Operation Safe Child is a collaboration between the Village of Maywood and the Maywood-Melrose Park-Broadview School District No. 89. The primary mission of Operation Safe Child is to keep children safe by teaching them what to do in dangerous situations such as abduction attempts, illegal drug activity, gang activity, and when they are home alone.
Operation Safe Child also teaches children good character habits and to think critically about the ultimate end results of their actions - especially when it involves criminal activity.
The purposes of this education are to reduce crime in the community, and to encourage students to grow into productive citizens. Although the Advisory Council for Operation Safe Child provides some instruction, the majority of the instruction is provided by Officers of the Maywood Police Department.
For more information about Operation Safe Child, please use the following contact information:
P.O. Box 810
Maywood, IL 60153
The previous information was generously provided by Operation Safe Child, A Non-Profit 501-C3 Civic Organization