The Blueprint

Bureau of Youth & Adolescent Health

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"I am as much of a citizen of this world as I am of this country. To [heck] with those people who are critical of what I am able to do to help save people's lives. I don't mean to sound hokey, but I grew up on the Christian ethic which says we are supposed to help the least of our brothers [and sisters]."

-Mickey Leland

Happy 73rd Birthday Mickey!

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George Thomas "Mickey" Leland


Houston, Texas


George Thomas “Mickey” Leland became famous as the champion of healthcare rights. He built his political reputation around health issues for poor people soon after he won a seat in the Texas State Legislature in 1972. Before that, as a pharmacy student at Texas Southern University (TSU), where he later taught clinical pharmacy, he toured low-income neighborhoods with nursing and medical students to inform families about available medical services in local clinics – information they would otherwise not have had.

In 1978 Mr. Leland was elected to the United States House of Representatives from the 18th Congressional District of Houston, Texas. He was re-elected to each succeeding Congress until his death in 1989. The work for which he is best remembered began when he chaired the House Select Committee on Hunger, creating the National Commission on Infant Mortality, which led to better access to fresh food for at-risk women, children and infants, and the first comprehensive services for the homeless.

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Building a Community of Practice

Houston Health Department Response in the Hurricane Harvey Recovery Effort

Inaugural Obama Foundation Summit 2017 [Recap]
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During the Obama Foundation (OF) Summit in Chicago, a small contingency of My Brother’s Keeper (MBK) leaders visited the Urban Prep Academy, where 100% of their seniors graduated with college acceptance letters, most with full 4-year scholarships. They leveraged this site visit to amplify the OF’s strategic intent. Michael Smith, Executive Director of the My Brother’s Keeper Alliance (MBKA), laid out the OF’s guiding principles and core programs that articulate their focus and priorities. Additionally, Smith announced that the MBKA, through the OF, will identify a select group of cities and work with them to deepen their efforts in either civic engagement, mentoring, or youth violence prevention.

Obama Foundation (OF) Programs

1. Fellowship – The OF Fellowship seeks to support and elevate outstanding civic innovators from around the world to amplify the impact of the work and to inspire wave of civic innovations.

2. OF Summit – The OF will invite civic leaders from around Chicago, the US and the world to come together to exchange ideas, explore creative solutions to common problems and experience civic art, technology, and music annually.

3. Training Days – The OF will host training days to energize young people, particularly those who are not yet engaged in civic life – and serve as the navigators to in the early stages of their journey.

4. My Brother’s Keeper Alliance – MBKA will ensure all young people can reach their full potential through mentoring, youth violence reduction, and civic engagement.

Top 10 Takeaways. What stands out to you on the list?

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Mayor Turner's Complete Communities Initiative

MBK Houston is currently supporting the Complete Communities Initiative with The Y-ABC (Young Adults Building Communities Program) to identify community advisors and leaders that will assist and support collaborative efforts with existing nonprofits, churches, and civic clubs in the Acres Homes and Gulfton community. MBK Houston, Houston Health Foundation will identify youth and young adults between the ages 18 to 30 and conduct focus groups and identify concerns in their community to train and equip them with skills to turn good ideas into reality through the Y-ABC Program. MBK Houston is participating with all the meetings and action plans taking place in both communities.

We Are Seeking Your Support!

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Connect your ability, services or time to support our local campuses with the "MBK Call to Action". We are collaborating with our local feeder campuses to bring them the following:

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If you would like to participate or have questions about getting involved please contact

All interested volunteers and partners must go through the HISD VIPS Process.

My Brother's Keeper Milestone Snapshots

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Houston Basics Principle #5

To view more Houston Basic videos click here.
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Jet Blue

· MBK Houston has partnered with the Houston Public Library in assisting JetBlue is continuing its mission of inspiring humanity with JetBlue For Good Month, a month-long celebration of kindness and good deeds. JetBlue For Good is JetBlue’s platform for social impact and corporate responsibility. Building on JetBlue’s signature Soar with Reading literacy program, designed to inspire and encourage kids' imaginations to take flight through reading, volunteers on this trip will check in with elementary schools in communities which have been impacted by Harvey, have low literacy rates targeted by MBK Houston and where their libraries are still closed. Volunteers will ride along with the library’s Mobile Express, HPL’s library-on-wheels, and help operate “pop up” libraries, distribute free books and host reading events, alongside partners from Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing.

Real Men Read @ Bruce ES

We are looking for some Real Men to volunteer a part of their precious Thursday morning just once a month. Each month the Real Men Read program with the 3rd grade classes will be facilitated at Bruce Elementary. The reading sessions are scheduled for 10:45-11:15 am on select days. Our librarian will have books prepared or you are welcome to bring your favorite kids book! If you are able to attend any of the days below please contact Bruce Elementary's counselor below!

Dates: (Thursdays) December 14th, January 18th, February 15th and May 17th

Time: 10:45 a.m. - 11:15 a. m.

Location: Bruce Elementary School

Contact: Rachel Barrios 713-226-4560 or

Please note that all volunteers must complete the HISD VIPS screening process.

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Mickey Leland College Preparatory Academy for Young Men Grand Opening Celebration Nov 14, 2017

The Mickey Leland College Preparatory Academy for Young Men, originally Young Men's College Preparatory Academy at E. O. Smith Elementary School, is a university preparatory secondary school for boys in the Fifth Ward community. It is a part of the Houston Independent School District (HISD) and is named after George Thomas "Mickey" Leland. HISD modeled the school after the Urban Prep Academy in Chicago, where 100% of their seniors graduated with their high school diplomas and college admission letters.

Young Men Empowerment Series: "We Salute You"

On Friday November 17th, MBK hosted it’s second Young Men Empowerment Series at the Mickey Leland College Preparatory Academy for Young Men. This eight part series provides the scholars with an opportunity to hear from dedicated professionals from all walks of life with the goal of empowering the young men to achieve professional and personal success, the value of education, the importance of financial literacy and ways to improve their mental and physical health. For the month of November we hosted a series entitled, “We Salute You” which focused on veterans and representatives from the military branches with the addition of character building, healthy and unhealthy habits, and anti gang violence. We had guest speakers from our major military branches as well as a representative from U of H Veterans Affairs and each student received a mini American flag in honor of the veterans.
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Community Health Worker Certification Training

HHD, Dia De La Mujer, The Fountain of Praise, and Harris County Health Department have partnered to provide interested individuals between the ages of 18 to 30 scholarships to earn their Community Health Workers Certification Training. We have already started the training with a program overview this past Saturday, November 18th at the Hiram Clarke Multi Service Center. Nearly 30 participants showed up from the 60 registered members and MBK Houston recruited a total of 38 participants. Recruitment was conducted within the Health Department, Acres Homes Community, Hiram Clarke Community, and through existing collaborating agencies. All collaborating agencies will follow up with the contacts to provide reminders and support. The next class will be on Saturday, December 2, 2017 and is the last day to begin orientation. Please below event list below for more details!
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Next Class on December 2, 2017 (More information below)

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CPPP Seeks Paid Spring Interns in Austin

The Research and Planning Intern will help use data to connect the dots, building systems for staff development and support, and engaging allies in the pursuit of CPPP's vision for Texas. The internship is perfect for a resilient and positive student with an interest in data management and analysis and its relation to policy development.

The Communications Intern will gain experience in strategic public policy communications. The ideal intern candidate is pro-active, energetic, flexible and strategic, and will help turn CPPP's detailed policy analysis into vivid publications, graphics, videos and more. Applicants should have very strong writing or production abilities, solid time management and organizational skills, and a passion for public policy.

  1. Starts in January!
  2. Must be currently enrolled graduate or undergraduate students
  3. Apply by Wednesday, December 6 or spread the word!

-->See the Full Posting for details

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Clean Slate Cooperative Expunction

On Friday, November 17, 2017, Houston Health Department and MBK Houston hosted the first Clean Slate Cooperative, a collaborative between Harris County Precinct One Commissioner Rodney Ellis and the Earl Carl Institute’s Juvenile Justice Project. In partnership with Beacon Law, Lone Star Legal Aid, Juvenile and Capital Advocacy Project at the University of Houston Law Center there were nineteen (19) participants who went through the Clean Slate Cooperative process. Out of the nineteen participants, twelve (12) were males and seven (7) were females.

There were fourteen (14) exhibitors who participated at the event. There was a total of forty-three (43) clean slate personnel present on the day of the event this includes exhibitors, staff, and volunteers. One of the volunteer attorneys assisting with screening was from Greenberg & Traurig.

Check below for our next event on December 1.

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Bronx Charity Founder Wants to Pay Bail for Poor Defendants Nationwide

The founder of the Freedom Fund is set to announce a new and unprecedented effort: the nation’s first fund designed to post bail for more than 150,000 indigent defendants being jailed across the country. Overseen by Robin Steinberg The Bail Project is scheduled to open offices in St. Louis and Tulsa, Oklahoma in January and expand to more than three dozen cities in the next five years. Aside from paying bail on behalf of the poor, the national fund, Ms. Steinberg said, will also seek to address a lack of data on the issue by collecting information on what sorts of defendants end up held on bail, as well as on the socioeconomic costs of pretrial detention. [She] also noted that remaining in jail without paying bail can affect the results of criminal proceedings [and] in New York more than 90 percent of those who cannot pay bail and stay locked up until their cases are concluded end up pleading guilty. More than half of her clients in the Bronx who were freed on bail had their cases dismissed by prosecutors once they were released.

-->Read the Full Article Here

Support our Houston Health Foundation!

Tuesday, Nov. 28th, 12am-11:45pm

This is an online event.

Big Give Houston is a 24 hour collaborative fundraiser for nonprofits in and around Houston; celebrating 24 hours of Houstonians coming together to give back to the local organization that support the community where we live, work and play. Join us tomorrow in donating to the Houston Health Foundation to support the work that is being done to address critical public health needs impacting the Houston region's most under-served families and children. Donate below!

Clean Slate Cooperative "Expunction/Sealing/Non-Disclosure"

Friday, Dec. 1st, 10am-2pm

1475 West Gray Street

Houston, TX

Clean Slate Cooperative is a collaboration between Harris County

Precinct One Commissioner Rodney Ellis and the Earl Carl Institute’s Juvenile

Justice Project. In partnership with My Brother’s Keeper Houston, Beacon Law, Lone Star Legal Aid, Juvenile and Capital Advocacy Project at the University of Houston Law Center. Participants will obtain free legal assistance in obtaining sealing, expunction, and non-disclosure of criminal records. Life-skills, housing, and employment partners will be available to assist participants with wrap-around services.

RSVPs are enabled for this event.

TX Certified Community Health Worker

Saturday, Dec. 2nd, 2:30am-4pm

3810 West Fuqua Street

Houston, TX

You still have time to JOIN!!! Get Certified! Earn your Community Health Workers Certification!!! Scholarships available for ages 18 to 30 years of age!!! Register below!

Follow Us @MBKhouston for more updates

The Houston Health Department's Bureau of Youth and Adolescent Health is here to serve youth, adolescents, parents, communities, and businesses in the greater Houston area.