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Mentoring for Youth Affected by the Opioid Crisis and Drug Addiction


Additional Links

Notice of Funding Opportunity (


Application Deadline: Mar 30, 2021

Sponsoring Organization

Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP)


Provides funding to strengthen existing mentoring programs and increase mentoring services for youth misusing or addicted to opioids, methamphetamine, or other substances; youth at risk of misusing drugs; and youth with family members dealing with substance misuse and addiction issues. Supports multiple mentoring approaches, including one-on-one, group, or peer mentoring, to reduce substance use, delinquency, and other problem behaviors and promote positive outcomes for youth.

Program consists of two grant categories:

  • Category 1: Mentoring Strategies for Youth Impacted by Opioids and Drug Addiction Project Site grants provide mentoring services as part of a prevention, treatment, and supportive approach for youth affected by illegal opioids or other addictive drug use.
  • Category 2: Statewide and Regional Mentoring Initiative for Youth Impacted by Opioids and Drug Addiction grants support a broader approach to building mentoring program capacity in targeted regions to help youth impacted by illegal opioids or other addictive drug use. This may include supporting states or statewide organizations providing subgrants to mentoring organizations in particular regions such as rural communities, tribes supporting various mentoring programs operating throughout a reservation, and national mentoring organizations funding active chapters or subrecipients in areas, especially rural communities, with demonstrated high levels of drug abuse.

Applicants must provide mentoring services to youth who are 17 years old or younger at the time of admission to the program.

Program objectives and deliverables include:

  • Expand capacity of existing mentoring programs to provide high-quality services to youth that reduce drug abuse, delinquency, other problem behaviors
  • Develop innovative approaches to mentoring youth impacted by opioids and drug addiction
  • Increase implementation of quality standards based on the elements of effective practice
  • Develop educational and support services for youth and their families to address opioid and drug addiction issues
  • Establish partnerships between Category 1 grantees and substance abuse treatment agencies to meet the need of the targeted youth population

Up to 20% of project funds may be used for non-mentoring direct services, such as mental health or substance abuse treatment, residential placement services, or other support services.

Amount of Funding

Award ceiling:

  • Category 1: $625,000
  • Category 2: $1,250,000

Estimated number of awards:

  • Category 1: 14
  • Category 2: 6

Project period: 36 months
Estimated total program funding: $16,250,000

Who Can Apply

Eligible Category 1 applicants are nonprofit and for-profit organizations, including tribal nonprofit and for-profit organizations, and faith-based organizations, that have operated a mentoring program for at least 1 year at the time of application.

Eligible Category 2 applicants include:

  • National organization with active chapters or subawardees in at least 45 states
  • States and territories
  • Federally recognized tribal governments
  • Organizations with statewide reach that provide mentoring services

Priority is given to applicants who propose to address challenges in rural communities, benefit individuals in high-poverty areas or persistent-poverty counties, and enhance public safety in economically distressed communities or Qualified Opportunity Zones.

To receive a rural priority consideration, applicants must describe:

  • What makes the geographic service area rural using U.S. Census Bureau or other appropriate government data
  • How isolated that area is from needed services
  • How they will address specific public safety challenges in rural communities

To receive a poverty priority consideration, applicants must provide information to demonstrate that the individuals who are intended to benefit from the requested grant reside in high-poverty areas or persistent poverty counties.

For this funding opportunity, high-poverty areas are described as any census tract with a poverty rate of at least 20%, as measured by the 2013-2017 5-year data series from the American Community Survey. Persistent poverty counties are described as any county that has had 20% or more of its population living in poverty over the past 30 years, as measured by the 1990 and 2000 decennial censuses and the most recent Small Area Income and Poverty Estimates.

To receive a priority consideration for a Qualified Opportunity Zone, applicants must include information that specifies how the project will enhance public safety in a specified Qualified Opportunity Zone.

In fiscal year (FY) 2021, all state, local, and university and college law enforcement agencies must be certified by an approved independent credentialing body or have started the certification process in order to be eligible for grant funding.

Geographic Coverage


What This Program Funds

Capacity Building • Operating Costs and Staffing • Training Providers

Application Process

Application instructions, requirements, and other information about the online application process can be found in the funding announcement.

In FY 2021, there is a new two-step application submission process. To be considered timely, the applicant must have received a validation message from the submission and the full application must be submitted in JustGrants by the respective deadlines.

  • Step 1: Applicants will submit an SF-424 and an SF-LLL in by the March 30, 2021 deadline.
  • Step 2: Applicants will submit the full application, including attachments, in the JustGrants grants management system by the April 13, 2021 deadline.

Applicant webinar recording
Applicant frequently asked questions


For questions on submitting in

For questions on submitting in JustGrants:

For programmatic and technical questions:
National Criminal Justice Reference Service (NCJRS) Response Center
TTY at 301-240-6310
Live chat

Topics This Program Addresses

Community Supervision • Justice System • Methamphetamine • Opioids • Prevention • Substance Use Disorder • Treatment • Youth