The PINQ project delivers education, leadership and character building activities for at-risk African American/ Black girls in Linn and Johnson County by providing an organized mentoring program designed for members to grow together as successful African American women. PINQ members meet in group settings with mentors from the community to discuss sensitive life topics, plan successful life goals, explore and process cultural effects on their lives, and develop a sense of self-advocacy.
The PINQ project takes place bi-monthly at Tanager Place. Each meeting is facilitated by mental health specialists and volunteer mentors from the community.
One session each month includes activities that promote character development such as guest speakers from the community, financial literacy presentations, exploring career options, developing community service projects, art projects, college readiness presentations and time for sharing common needs or concerns.
The other monthly session features a field trip or service project. PINQ participants have the opportunity to plan a service project or visit a woman-led business from the community.
In addition to these structured activities, the girls of PINQ meet with their mentors throughout the month for one-one-one time. Formal mentoring relationships through the PINQ Project last approximately six months. Protégés will be given the opportunity to help plan the next year’s program and become PINQ mentors for incoming PINQ participants.