John L. Smith founded Turning Point Mentoring in 2009 – A 5013c Non-profit Organization
John L. Smith was born and raised in South Central Los Angeles, California. He grew up in a broken home. His parents divorced when he was two years old. John saw his father only twice a year which left him yearning for a close relationship with a fatherly figure. His mother later remarried. However, her husband was an abusive man, ostracized him and his older sister, at the age of 14 they devoiced. Not only did John not have a positive male role model to speak to in his life, he felt responsible to help his mother with the with the household bills. During that time, John was too young to apply for a job, so he turned to the streets to support his mother. At the age of 13, John was sexually violated by a trusted older man of the neighborhood. The surrounding circumstances caused John to become bitter and rebellious and turned to drugs and alcohol as a way of coping. Thereafter, at the age of 18, John attempted to enlist in the Navy, however was not accepted because of his drug and alcohol use.
Unfortunately, John’s life continued to spiral out of control which led him to serving two years in prison for armed robbery at the age of 19. During his time in prison, John began to re-evaluate his life. He knew this was not the life he wanted to live – It was his “Turning Point”. While in prison John started taking vocational classes, Welding, Sheet Metal Lay-Out, Underwater Welding, and Machine Shop and has been a CNC Machinist in the Aircraft/Aerospace Industry scene 1980.
In 1998, John gave his life to the Lord, Jesus Christ and Joined Bible Enrichment Fellowship International Church. It was under the leadership of Apostle, Beverly “Bam” Crawford. John’s desire to mentor young men was birthed when a church member requested him to mentor her three foster boys. John completed the BOSS Movement Mentoring Program in 2004. Thereafter, John began assisting with the church’s mentoring program ministry. There were approximately 20 young men who were mentored through the program. John believes God has blessed him with the gift to mentor At-Risk youth. He is passionate about providing a safe haven for young men to receive the attention, leadership and guidance they need to become respectful, honest and dignified young men in society. He feels that Turning Point Mentoring can make a difference by devoting time, patience and commitment, by encouraging and giving our young men the confidence they need to pursue their dreams. If we reach one child and make a difference in their life, we have accomplished your goal. We are confident we can change the lives of many of these troubled young men to become role models and leaders of tomorrow with the right mentor and counseling. John L Smith is a father of three and seven grandchildren.
“Nobody can do everything, but everybody can do something. Gill Scott Heron “Even if you’re on the right track, you’ll get run over if you just sit there.” Will Rogers “Many of life’s failures are experienced by people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.” Thomas Edison