Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2009, $428,990)
The Second Chance Act (P.L. 110-199) authorizes grants to government agencies and nonprofit groups to provide employment assistance, substance abuse treatment, housing, family programming, mentoring, victims support, and other services to help adult and juvenile ex-offenders make a successful transition from incarceration to the community. In support of the goals of the Second Chance Act, OJJDP will provide grants to support mentoring and other transitional services essential to reintegrating juvenile offenders into the community. The grants will be used for mentoring juvenile offenders during confinement, through transition back to the community, and post-release; transitional services to assist the reintegration of youth offenders into the community; and training in offender and victims issues. The legislative authority for this initiative can be found in the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act of 2002 and the Department of Justice Appropriations Act, 2009, Pub. L. 111-8.
The Believe in Y.O.U.T.H. (Youth Offenders Utilizing Transitional Services for a Healthy Recovery) Mentorship Program, is a joint collaboration of the Cobb County Community Services Board, a local mental health authority, and the Cobb County Juvenile Court. The program will provide mentoring services for incarcerated youth, ages 12-18, who have a substance abuse problem or co-occurring disorder and support their transition from a correctional facility back into the community. The Believe in Y.O.U.T.H. Mentorship Program will build on the successful implementation of the Cobb County Young Offender Reentry Program (YORP). This program will demonstrate the importance of providing youth with supportive and sustainable relationships starting prior to release back into the community as a means to reduce recidivism rates. In addition, this program will provide youth with opportunities to engage in appropriate activities in the community while instilling youth to make positive decisions. This program will include one-to-one and group mentoring that will be formal and based on goals around team building, leadership development, cultural diversity, and educational assistance. Several short and long term performance measures will be used to demonstrate the effectiveness of this program over time, including increase in social connectedness and support, reduction of substance abuse, and decrease in criminal behaviors. CA/NCF