Near Southside, Inc. Near Southside, Inc.

Near Southside Member

Academy 4

Academy 4 is a volunteer mentoring program that provides a mentor for every 4th grade student in the schools we serve. Academy 4 partners with churches to recruit mentors who will mentor a student in their local elementary school. Right now, we serve 26 schools in Austin, Birdville, Dallas, Ft. Worth, HEB and Irving school districts.

One Friday each month, Academy 4 joins with each of these schools and sponsors a three-part program: 1) SPARK Clubs - designed to give students new and varied experiences. The fourth graders choose from activities including cooking, animal science, drums, drama, dance, golf, robotics, and more. 2) Leadership Assemblies - During this time we provide encouraging messages to empower students toward leadership, using the acrostic LEADERS (Lead, Encourage, Attitude, Develop, Example, Respect, Serve). 3) Mentor Relationships - Caring adults from the community discuss with their assigned student what was taught during the leadership assembly, and then they have free time to play games and talk about their lives.

Academy 4 is a highly cooperative effort! Teachers, administrators, community volunteers along with community churches meet throughout the year to design and refine the program. You can take part too! Visit our website ( and sign up now to be a mentor. Be a part of something great! Volunteer today and make a difference!