Opportunity to Invest: Empowering Youth

By Leslie Robinson

Creator, Keep It Real Game

C.E.O., Trance4mation Games

According to the Federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration – over 3 million youth ages 12-17 took part in group against group fights last year. Millions of our youth are feeling isolated, alienated, and are engaging in violent behaviors.

I am a psychotherapist, and a consultant for the foster care system. For six years, I created and implemented creative arts after-school programs for at-risk and hard-to-reach youth. I created the Keep It Real RX communication board game in an attempt to help youth to communicate with one another in deep, meaningful and more vulnerable ways, in order for them to get more in touch with their feelings, and to encourage empathy, a genuine sense of belonging, and compassion for one another.

Trance4mation Games (creator of the Keep It Real game) has partnered with the Council For Unity, and the NYPD School Safety Police Department / Explorer’s Program to use the Keep It Real game in their schools and posts. Counselors, School Safety Officers, teachers, and students have all reported unusually powerful results from playing this game.

The Council For Unity is a non-for-profit organization that specializes in reducing violence in schools and communities. Its mission is to empower young people, individuals, and groups with the skills necessary to promote unity, safety and achievement in schools and communities. The NYPD Explorer’s Program reaches out to New York City’s youth and young adults in every community to help build up relations between the community and the New York City Police Department. Explorers are taught the importance of higher education, self-discipline, and respect for authority while they actively participate in community service projects and other Exploring events.

Trance4mation Games is deeply committed to assisting those who are working to help our disenfranchised youth become more connected to their schools, and their communities. 95% of the students who have played this game feel the use of the Keep it Real game in their classrooms would promote a better learning environment, reduce violence, and create more harmony in their schools.

I am seeking funding in order to have the capacity to distribute the Keep It Real game to schools and organizations who work with youth, and are in need of a tool which will help them to connect, bond, and establish positive and productive relationships with teens, as well as to assist the teens in understanding themselves and others, and life more deeply.

The use of this game would save money as it has proven to create a more “human” and peaceful environment. When people feel heard, they feel more motivated to learn and to participate. When people have a safe space to share themselves and their life experiences with one another, they feel like they belong. We hope to be able to make this game available on a wide scale, and to hold game events in schools and communities in order to bring people and their inner worlds together.

Follow us: @KeepItRealGame

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