AMACHI is a Nigerian Ibo word meaning “who knows but what God has brought us through this child.”

Chicago LAMP is modeled after the National AMACHI Program, which provides assistance to children who are impacted by incarceration through mentoring. The AMACHI model was developed in 2000 by Reverend Dr. Wilson W. Goode, former Mayor of Philadelphia, and John Di Iulio, professor at the University of Pennsylvania. This model has been replicated in more than 250 cities across the nation and has proven successful in offering intervention that breaks the troublesome cycle of generational poverty and incarceration.

The AMACHI program’s innovative design elements include:

  • The support and involvement of faith-based congregation from the youngsters own or nearby neighborhoods.
  • The promotion of strong personal relationships between youth and their mentors.
  • Professional case management and support of the mentoring matches to ensure that the “mentee” his/her family and the mentor can all work together harmoniously.

As of December 2012, the AMACHI Mentoring Coalition has partnered with 9,672 state-wide partnerships in 38 states and matched 17,056 youth between the ages 4 to 18 with mentors.