Youth & Families

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The DREAM Program is a welcoming community that provides mentoring and youth programs to families living in affordable housing neighborhoods. DREAM's highest priorities are the neighborhoods with which we work and their youth. We strive to bring volunteers and resources to each neighborhood to enrich the lives of participating youth and to ultimately empower them to live healthy, productive, fulfilling lives.

To participate in DREAM, youth must reside in one of our partner neighborhoods. We provide a volunteer mentor to each eligible youth living in the neighborhood. In some cases, interested youth outnumber the available volunteer mentors. In these situations, DREAM encourages our Local Programs to grow sustainably, recruiting new mentors, children and teens at a pace that can be maintained year-to-year.

How youth and families can participate

DREAM offers three types of programming throughout a year. Participants are encouraged to take part in each program, which are all elements of our Theory of Change.

  • DREAM Local Programs: This program includes weekly mentoring activities, culminating experiences and some adventure-based activities.
  • Summer Community Programs: This program includes recreation and exploration activities throughout the summer geared towards enriching a participant’s summer away from school and his or her mentor.  The summer community program typically takes place within the area surrounding a family’s neighborhood and connects them with their local environment and other available resources.
  • Adventure Programs: Adventure programs differ depending on where you live. Examples include Camp DREAM (for youth living in Vermont), scholarships to summer camps in your region and Winter Adventure Camps and trips.  Adventure programs are geared towards providing mentees opportunities to take constructive risks and expand their comfort zone.

In each of these programs, there is a role for a youth, parent, guardian, sibling, friend or relative. We encourage all families member to take part in DREAM and to provide feedback to our office and mentors. To start participating in DREAM or to find out the best way to participate in DREAMplease contact the DREAM Office closest to your Local Program.