What is Best Men?
Best Men is a youth development program with a character-building curriculum, designed to provide positive and healthy answers to the challenges facing boys today. Due to the overwhelming demand for a boys’ program, Best Men was created in the fall of 2000. It is modeled after the highly successful Best Friends program for girls, founded by Elayne Bennett in 1987.
The primary goal of Best Men is to provide boys with the tools and the environment needed to help them develop into responsible young men.
This goal is accomplished with the implementation of a multi-faceted program which:
- Defines manhood
- Explains the consequences of their actions
- Teaches boys that (1) choosing to delay or avoid sexual activity is a good decision; (2) rejecting alcohol usage helps eliminate abusive or addictive behavior; (3) rejecting illegal drug use allows the brain and body to properly develop and helps eliminate criminal behavior; (4) restraining from violence is the real key to resolving conflict.
- Provides boys with positive adult male role models to support and encourage them in their goal of becoming men worthy of respect
- Develops positive peer support
- Promotes ongoing parental support, especially from fathers
- The curriculum includes the following units: Respect, Decision-making, Friendship, Relationships, Alcohol Abuse and Drug Abuse, Fitness and Nutrition, and AIDS and STDs
Several times a year, model speakers discuss their own lives and the important decisions they made when they were young. The program includes many extracurricular activities which strengthen the boys’ bond with their peers and reinforce the Best Men messages. Fitness activities teach physical discipline, decision-making skills, and promote a fun, learning environment. Cultural events provide opportunities that broaden students’ horizons.
How does a boy become the best he can be?
That is the challenge our boys face as they prepare for life. How can we help them become young men worthy of respect? Boys and girls are inherently different. The key to helping our boys through adolescence is to provide them with a better understanding of what it means to be a man.
Best Men defines the characteristics and attitudes of responsible men, and encourages men of integrity to become more involved in young boys’ lives.
An adolescent needs a positive adult male role model in his life to guide him in the process of becoming a man worth respect. This generation is in great need of positive messages and personal support. Together, we can offer students the time and guidance needed to make a lasting difference.