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Education and Youth Services


The Education and Youth Services division is dedicated to improving the lives and safety of children and youth residing in DHA's communities. DHA's goal is to connect its youth to positive enrichment programs such as on-site after school and tutoring services, mentoring and youth development programs. Education and Youth Services programs include, but are not limited to:

Educational Engagement

  • Dropout Intervention Program (DIP): Targets 100 Durham Public School students, grades 8-12, who reside in DHA's Communities. This program is designed to help students identify their strengths and to utilize them to overcome their barriers. In addition, The DIP promotes academic achievement and reduces the occurrence of behavior problems and other factors which inhibit students' ability to do well in school.
  • 21st Century Community Learning Centers: This program provides academic enrichment opportunities that help students meet state and local standards in core academic subjects during non-school hours during the school year and summer. The 21st Century CLC Program is offered in eight (8) DHA housing communities.
  • F.A.M.E: Family and Academic Mentoring Empowerment (FAME): The goals and objectives of FAME are to reconnect youth with the importance of education by providing the necessary support and resources to be successful at school and in the community. DHA youth are referred to the program by the Juvenile Justice Court System.
  • Truancy Court: Implemented in conjunction with Durham County Public Schools to improve school attendance, to determine the reasons behind poor attendance and to make referrals for community-based services when appropriate.
  • Youth Leadership Academy: A program for middle and high school-age youth designed to engage youth in activities such as public speaking, dance, poetry/creative writing, debate and community service projects as methods for building leaderships skills.


  • My Sister's Keeper: Student interns from NCCU's Psychology Department implemented this program to mentor middle school age girls in the McDougald Terrace community. The goal of the program is to provide leadership, mentorship and promote healthy well-being, physically and emotionally through open forums, coaching, community service events, family involvement, activities and more.
  • Brother-2-Brother: The purpose is to foster open dialogue with male youth in various DHA communities around social topics such as self-esteem, peer pressure and other teen issues. Academic areas such as college preparation are also discussed and explored.
  • Adolescents, Growth, Engage and Environment (A.G.E.E.): Targets 13-18 year old females in the Cornwallis Public Housing Community. This program educates the youth about the criminal justice system and about their rights as citizens.
  • Mocha DIVAS: A Female Empowerment Program for women ages 18+. This program engages young women living in the Damar Court and Morreene Road Communities on topics such as Self Image, Positive Growth, Substance Abuse, Self-Sufficiency, Self-Empowerment, Building Healthy Relationship and Single Parenting/Co-Parenting.


  • Enrichment Trips
    • Smithsonian Institute Washington, DC
    • The Lion King Greenville, SC
    • Wilmington Beach Wilmington, NC
    • Duke University Durham, NC
    • Carolina Beach, NC
    • Winston Salem State University Winston Salem, NC
    • International Civil Rights Museum, Greensboro, NC
    • Howard University Washington, DC
    • Charlotte Bobcats Charlotte, NC
    • North Carolina State Fair Raleigh, NC
    • North Carolina Central University Durham, NC
    • Chuck Davis African Dance Ensemble Durham, NC
    • Radio One Raleigh, NC
    • Polk County Correctional Facility Butner, NC
    • North Carolina Zoo Asheboro, NC
    • Zydeco Raleigh, NC
    • King's Dominion Richmond, VA
  • Police Athletic League (PAL): This Durham Police Athletic League (PAL) program has several goals: providing youth with an alternative to crime and gang activity, building bridges within the community and creating mentoring relationships between officers and youth. The PAL program includes basketball leagues for grades 1 through 5 and ages 15 to 18, a soccer league and a baseball league.
  • Hip-Hop Choir: The Hip-Hop Choir engages kids ages 12-17 from various DHA housing communities in music study, rehearsal and performance. Students from various housing communities gather twice a week to study hip-hop theory through the performance of spirituals, jazz, bebop and rhythm and blues music.

Scholarship Opportunities - Ruffin/Edwards Academic Development Scholarship Program

The purpose of the Ruffin/Edwards Academic Development Scholarship (READS) Program is to provide assistance for college or technical school students in meeting financial needs. Students must be a resident of public housing; a high school graduate or have an adult high school diploma; an acceptance letter from a college or university. Scholarship award amounts will vary depending on available funds with a maximum award of up to $800 per year. Scholarships are awarded twice a year, fall and spring. These Scholarship funds are obtained from the public and private sector through fundraising. The scholarship amount is determined by the READS advisory committee. If you are interested in making a direct cash contribution or become a corporate sponsor, please contact Resident Services, at 919.683.8596. Renewal is possible if funds are available and satisfactory progress is maintained.

READS Application (COMING SOON) 


Map showing the location of Durham within the state of North Carolina

Serving the City of Durham, North Carolina