Fr. Monan was appointed co-chair of the October event with comedian Bill Cosby by Gov. William Weld. The conference, titled "The Massachusetts Summit: The Promise of Our Youth," is the first follow-up to the Presidents' Summit for America's Future, chaired by retired Gen. Colin Powell in Philadelphia in May.
The Massachusetts event will be held Oct. 25-26 at Northeastern University and is aimed at bringing together the state's corporations, non-profit institutions, universities, local and state governments, and individual citizens to create a new level of volunteer service for the commonwealth's young people.
"My own attitude is that children deserve the attention we are trying to provide," Fr. Monan said. "If we don't do this, the children of today will not be the only ones to suffer. Our business, our cities, our culture and our society all will pay the price."
Fr. Monan, who co-chairs the Greater Boston One-to-One mentoring program, noted that the conference will be organized on the proposition that America's youth must have access to five fundamental resources:
-An ongoing relationship with a caring adult or mentor.
-A safe place to learn and grow.
-A healthy start.
-A marketable skill through effective education.
-An opportunity to give back through community service.
"I attended the summit that Gen. Powell chaired in Philadelphia and I am convinced that our Massachusetts summit is the opportunity we have been looking for to give every child a fair start in life," Fr. Monan said.
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