The city of Compton is accepting a challenge from the White House.  CBS2/KCAL9’s Louisa Hodge reports Compton Mayor Aja Brown announced the acceptance of President Barack Obama’s “My Brother’s Keeper” community challenge at a Local Action Summit to develop a plan within 180 days to boost literacy rates citywide.

Volunteers with local nonprofit groups, youth providers and other community members were on hand along with Brown at the Dollarhide Community Center to help inspire the community to make some changes.

Brown said the program is “really focusing on specific outcomes for young men and boys of color, not just looking at education, but how that actually correlates throughout their lives.”

“When you look at the statistics, whether it’s reading at grade level, or high school dropout rate, or it’s imprisonment rate or murder rate of young men of color, you’re double digits behind their white male counterpart,” said My Brother’s Keeper director Michael Smith.

The program is aimed at helping young people read at grade level by third grade, improving access to jobs and valuable work experience, and reducing violence in the community.

President Obama issued the “My Brother’s Keeper Community Challenge” back in February asking communities across the nation to close the opportunity gap.

Despite his youth, Compton teenager Jeremiah Merriweather said he knows that a lot needs to change.

“Violence, police brutality, low income, jobs” are just some of the challenges facing local youth, Merriweather said.