Help Fund a Site Coordinator in a School for a Year (31 campuses – 2 funded)
Campus Chat (6 per year)
Mentoring Program (424 Mentors)
Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Program
Project Success (FUNDED)
XY Zone Men’s Leadership Program
CIS Program Descriptions
A high school program that removes barriers to college and career access and increases a CIS student’s ability to succeed in life after high school. The program provides individual and group counseling, crisis intervention, field trips to area colleges/universities and local corporations, assistance with SAT/ACT testing college applications, financial aid and scholarship assistance.
To enhance Project Success, and to impact more young lives, CIS developed Bootcamp. In line with O’Keefe’s (1989) study of college outdoor orientation programs, Bootcamp is an intensive eight week summer program led by CIS staff and alumni. It’s an adventure wilderness program providing the necessary skills to help our young people be accomplished and productive citizens in our community. Bootcampers learn leadership skills, participate in team building activities, and receive GRIT training (persistence, determination and resilience). They go on field trips to local businesses and colleges to discover insider tips on career opportunities, industry expectations, college resources, resume building and interviewing skills. University professors and community business leaders teach study and time management skills, professor expectations, dressing for business success, banking skills, interviewing skills, and business expectations. And they help with community projects — food distribution, volunteering at local churches, and working on service projects at Texas State parks. One camper summed up their experience….” CIS has given me new friends who have become family. Knowledge not only for college but for the rest of my life, it has given me the strength to hold on for a better tomorrow and forget my struggles of yesterday. I am not the same person I was before this camp…It has changed me for the better….It’s calming knowing I have these people I can trust. I know they have my back. They make me feel important and loved and that the impossible is possible because “I am a living story. I will not give up.” – CIS Bootcamp Participant
Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Program
Youth with physical and mental health disorders are at an increased risk of not graduating from high school, at an increased risk for suicide, and can carry the disorders into adulthood, creating lifelong issues for themselves and their families. Mental health issues can include substance abuse, depression, anxiety, and suicidal ideations. Physical issues can include eating disorders, physical abuse, self-harm, and obesity. Suicide is the second leading cause of death among youth ages 15-19 in the United States and recently surpassed vehicle accidents as the leading cause of death among adolescents in middle school. In Comal County instances of adolescent death from suicide are skyrocketing to crisis levels. There have been adolescent suicides in Guadalupe County this year, but statistics are not yet available
CIS provides mental health services, including contracted mental health counselors and the implementation of our Signs Of Suicide (SOS) program to focus on student’s mental health and suicide prevention. SOS provides tools for adults and students to identify signs and symptoms of depression, suicidality, and self-injury in themselves and their peers and teaches students the importance of involving a caring adult to get help for suicidal peers. This school-based mental health program is designed to help youth navigate the often difficult path of adolescence. Using a simple and easy-to remember acronym ACT (acknowledge, care, and tell), students learn steps to take if they encounter a situation that requires help from a trusted adult.
A men’s leadership program for middle and high schools for at-risk young men. Recent studies have shown a growing educational achievement gap between males and females with boys falling behind girls in the education system. The disparity is even greater for African-American and Hispanic young men. XYZone supports and guides adolescent males as they journey into manhood, helping them succeed in school and prepare for life. Trained staff design the XYZone program to meet the individual needs of teen males at each campus while ensuring that participants are part of a positive “brotherhood” that works to build character and leadership. Services include support groups, mentoring programs, community service projects, peer education, and facilitated group discussions and job readiness services. Participation provides an opportunity for young men to promote healthy development by improving skills and options, bolstering self-esteem, promoting a sense of hope in their future, as well as providing opportunities for growth and achievement. The impact of XYZone has been significant as participants demonstrate improvements in grades, increased attendance; decreased involvement with risky behaviors, increased volunteerism, development of leadership skills, and future aspirations. These young men are challenged and empowered to aim high, obtain an education, and break the cycle of poverty.
One of the many volunteer opportunities is the Mentoring Program. In many cases, it’s because of the mentor connection that a child makes the decision to stay in school, say no to drugs, and avoid other risky behaviors. CIS currently has 424 mentors and more mentors are needed.
Sponsor a Child for a Year
CIS addresses the barriers in overall health and well-being to address and meet basic needs of food, safety, love, and self-esteem. CIS staff ensures students and their families have clothing, food, school supplies, transportation, and covered dental and doctor visit fees.
Campus Chats are a unique experience — to hear from the consumers of CIS services, the student’s themselves, and what CIS means to them. During a campus chat, guests are treated to lunch while a panel of students shares their personal stories and how CIS is an integral part of their life. It’s an amazing experience getting to hear stories from our CIS kids.