LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – A mentoring group designed to make a difference in the lives of young African American men celebrated its graduating seniors and their next steps in life.

While you always hear the saying, ‘it takes a village to raise a child,’ it’s also important to help steer that child away from making the wrong decisions. This is why organizers from The Turning Point of Lansing said Wednesday’s annual ‘Rites of Passage’ event is so important in helping thousands of men since 2006.  

“It warms my heart to see this program from an infancy stage to where we are now,” Program Director of Turning Point of Lansing Robert Cavin Jr. said.

He said every child needs a mentor, regardless of background, and that included the seven graduating seniors on Wednesday.

“They have great career goals ahead of them bright futures, and we as elders, we celebrate and will provide continual support to these young men,” Cavin Jr. added.

Whether it’s through a program like this one, or a one-on-one connection with someone you already know, program leaders said that personal relationships will surely make a difference.

“It’s just been a tremendous blessing to see 1,000+ young men we’ve helped to successfully graduate high school move on to college, many are gone to medical school, law school, the military, a variety of occupations,” he said.

They love giving back in any way that they can because we all need someone.

“We love pouring our knowledge, experience, expertise into this community. We love the Greater Lansing community, and we thank all of our supporters,” he said.

Over 75% have continued their education at community colleges and universities through the program.

You can learn more about Turning Point of Lansing here.