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Monday, August 24, 2015

Lifeplan leaders featured on BlogTalkRadio's Mentoring Today Podcast

Lifeplan Co-Founder Andy Mecca and Creation Wizard Jim Kooler recently were featured on Blog Talk Radio with Vince Reardon of Mentoring Today, a weekly, 30-minute radio program offering listeners guest interviews about mentoring youth. Listen to the podcast episodes below:

Providing Youth with Tools for a Lifetime of Achievement

Featuring Andy Mecca

Andy is uniquely qualified to discuss guiding youth to achievement. He is a national leader in youth mentoring and the author of 12 books about youth development, drug prevention, and mentoring young adults, including “A Plan for Life: Why Every Young Person Should Have a Lifeplan,” which incidentally has a foreword written by Star Wars filmmaker George Lucas.

He is the President of the California Mentor Foundation and is the cofounder and Chief Inspiration Officer for the Lifeplan Institute, which helps adolescents and young adults plan to thrive now and in the future. Formerly, he has been a drug treatment professional for more than 40 years, and served as California’s drug czar from 1991 to 1998 and also the Chairman of the California Task Force on Self-Esteem. Mecca holds an M.A. and Ph.D. in Public Health from the University of California, Berkeley.

Meeting the Challenges of Youth Through Mentoring Programs

Featuring Jim Kooler

Today's youth face many challenges, both old and new. How can mentoring programs help leverage those challenges into opportunities?

Consider the problems of gambling and substance misuse, which are prevalent among young people. For instance, 17% of youth reported gambling 52 or more times in the past year, and the same percentage of youth drank five or more drinks on 12 or more days in the past year, according to a recent study in the Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs.

The Journal noted that 10% of youth reported having three or more gambling problems in the past year, and 15% of young people reported having three or more alcohol problems.

Jim’s career has focused on helping youth become active leaders and resources in their communities. He is the administrator of the California Friday Night Live Partnership, the highly successful youth engagement program that is widely regarded as a landmark state-mentoring program. He has also served as deputy director of the California Department of Alcohol and Drug Programs and director of the Governor’s Mentoring Partnership in California. Jim holds a BA in psychology and a Master's and Doctorate in Public Health from UC Berkeley.

If you wish to learn more about Jim Kooler's work, visit the California Mentoring Partnership website at, email him at, or call him at 559-733-6496 ext.

Check out the Mentoring Today podcast on BlogTalkRadio.

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