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MML Joins Forces with America's Promise

The Alliance for Youth

The number of young people not on the road to becoming successful adults is an absolute crisis in America today. America’s Promise- Alliance for Youth, established at the Presidents’ Summit and chaired by General Colin Powell, challenges all Americans and organizations to help provide youth access to the five resources critical to their development. This is why the Michigan Municipal League is hosting America’s Promise fellow, Jennifer Smith, until the end of December to bring forth support for our communities’ youth. MML challenges our member cities and villages to become Communities of Promise and connect their citizens and resources with the youth that need support. A Community of Promise supplies access to the five basic promise’s children and young people need, which are:

  • Mentor: having an ongoing relationship with a caring adult.

  • Protect: supplying safe places and structured activities during non-school hours.

  • Nurture: offering a healthy start, emotionally, physically and mentally.

  • Teach: effective educating that will lead to the use of a marketable skill

  • Serve: giving opportunity to give back to the community

Research findings show that when these assets are accessible youth are less likely to engage in a wide range of negative behavior including alcohol abuse, tobacco and drug use, teen pregnancy, dropping out of school, domestic violence and attempted suicide.

We ask all communities to help us meet the challenge of connecting 2 million youth to the five basic promises by the year 2000 by becoming a Community of Promise. In Michigan is already the home to twenty Communities of Promise with at least six more seeking to become one. The types of communities are a variety ranging from urban to rural, college towns to historical and Michigan’s largest to smallest.

If these points of information haven’t already convinced you to get involved, there’s more!

  • Networking among communities in your region and statewide

  • Recognition as being an active part of a national movement

  • Strengthening our state-wide efforts and reaffirming Michigan’s
    dedication to its citizens

  • Demonstrating Commitment to the youth in your community

  • Positive viewing as being a community that believes in its young
    citizens and wishes to encourage youth involvement in the community.

Your local government can play an important role in the positive development and strengthening of community life by directing resources and developing innovative policies that promote asset building. The simplest key to empowering the youth of your community might be to even encourage youth involvement in community planning committees.

America’s Promise (National Organization)
How to become a Community of Promise
This links you directly to the guides and resources available on the National web site.

Michigan’s Communities of Promise:
Alpena & Montmorency Counties
Calhoun County
Capital Area (Lansing/East Lansing)
Chippewa County
Delta County
Eaton County
Grand Rapids
Isabella County
Luce County
Mackinac County
Marquette & Alger Counties
Montcalm County
St. Clair County
St. Joseph County
Tuscola County

Safe Night

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The Michigan Municipal League is here to assist your community if interested and wish to find out more about America’s Promise please contact Meghan Broderick at the Michigan Municipal League by e-mail at or contact Colleen Layton at






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