Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2012, $1,538,000)
This program supports the enhancement or expansion of initiatives that will help communities develop or improve mentoring programs for at-risk or high-risk populations that are underserved due to location, shortage of mentors, special physical or mental challenges of the targeted population, or other analogous situations that the community identifies. This program is authorized by the Department of Justice Appropriations Act, 2012; Pub. L. 112-55, 125 Stat. 552, 617.
Project Combine will implement evidence-based mentoring and substance abuse treatment for at-risk, justice-involved youth and their families at Chestnut Health Systems, affiliate sites in Arizona, Colorado, Massachusetts, Virginia, and Washington. The primary goals are to: 1) implement the AIM mentoring model in five new states and enhance it by training mentors in selected skills used in an evidence-based substance use treatment model (A-CRA); and 2) provide parents/caregivers with A-CRA sessions targeted to their needs and mentoring support to improve outcomes for their children. Accomplishment of these goals are expected to result in a reduction of juvenile delinquency and help youth abstain from substance use that usually leads to poor academic performance, drop-out, and greater likelihood for involvement in more serious crimes. Sites will recruit, train, and supervise mentors; enroll up to 500 youth and match them with mentors; provide and supervise A-CRA treatment by certified clinicians; and collect performance, impact, and outcome measures. Training and monthly coaching calls will be held for mentor coordinators and clinicians, and fidelity to the models assessed. Findings will be used to understand how evidence-based mentoring and substance abuse treatment relationships may reduce involvement with justice-involved youth who use substances and to share that knowledge with other jurisdictions and programs.