ARISE is a comprehensive resource for those engaged in providing services for at-risk youth and their families.

When it comes to sharing the kind of practical advice parents and grandparents once provided children who engaged in disruptive behavior, ARISE (a nonprofit foundation established in 1986) acts like surrogate parents by providing life management skills curricula that focus on the knowledge once taught as families sat around the kitchen table at night discussing the day’s events. This is where most of our informal education once took place, where we learned about anger and conflict management, the importance of a good education, how to find a job and keep it, why one’s friends often foretell one’s own future and much more good advice that shaped our lives.

For almost 30 years ARISE has produced time-tested lessons in plain English, no big words as obstacles for students to trip and fall on. ARISE curricula are easily understood by youth reading three to four grades below average because the focus is on participation, not neat handwriting and punctuation. ARISE lessons are perfect for those interested in positive youth development and successful teen programs focused on diversion and reintegration.

The ARISE home office team—unsatisfied with producing a complete library of memorable stories and solid, practical information that sticks to young minds like Velcro—also developed a series of training programs for teachers, juvenile justice staff, and those offering youth services and programs for troubled youth and their families. In addition the ARISE website makes it possible to download lessons, books, and posters and to order videos for all ARISE-trained staff statewide. To date ARISE has trained over 5,000 ARISE-certified life skills facilitators who have gone on to teach OVER 4,000,000 documented hours of instruction from the Everglades to the panhandle. ARISE is used in all 25 Florida congressional districts and across the USA and in Canada, Jamaica, England, Australia, Bahamas, Bermuda, New Zealand, Mexico, Puerto Rico, Bosnia, Kazakhstan, Kingdom of Bahrain, South Africa, American Samoa, and now Vietnam. The ARISE curriculum is also available in Spanish.  

ARISE-trained group facilitators act as mentors, sharing the fundamental information in the ARISE curricula with understanding and concern. This surprises often violent teens used to grim, unsmiling faces issuing single-syllable orders to misdirected youth with bad attitudes when held under lock and key. ARISE-trained juvenile justice staff truly become life coaches, something that has been lacking in the lives of these children. These good people share realistic information that’s right for today, ready for tomorrow—the basics at-risk youth require to succeed in today’s competitive society. And it’s done in a caring and compassionate manner.

The secret to ARISE’s success is a small group of dedicated people who, on a daily basis, face and overcome the challenges so many nonprofits are forced to cope with today. The good people ARISE employs and those in Washington who support the needs of high-risk youth enable ARISE to provide its curricula and life skills staff training program across Florida in over 100 juvenile justice facilities where youth are held behind razor-wire fences and steel doors. This effort enables ARISE to meet head-on the youth’s established patterns of negative behavior while they are incarcerated, helping them reenter society with tools they need to flourish and succeed.