The GEMS Program

Gaining Empowerment in Middle School

Mission: GEMS empowers middle school students impacted by the incarceration of a family member by providing resources and tools for success at home, at school, and in their communities.

GEMS 3-Prong Approach

GEMS students come to a weekly class where an instructor helps them discover the tools to manage emotions, make healthy decisions, and focus on the future. Through exercises and discussion, they pick up the skills that lead to healthy social and emotional development.
Studies show that the biggest factor in a child’s success is the level of parental involvement, but that’s very difficult when one parent may be in prison and the other struggling to make ends meet. That’s why one of GEMS’s goals is to provide support for the caregivers.
Students can be very receptive to both negative and positive influences. Studies show that adult role models can help students discover the gifts they bring to the world. We work to provide those role models, because we know it takes a community to help a child grow into a healthy adult.


Middle school is hard for at-risk youth. With intervention, it can inspire them to amazing futures. Help us empower middle school students.