Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2018, $500,000)
The Mentoring Opportunities for Youth Initiative, Category 3 (Mentoring Programs for Youth Involved in the Juvenile Justice System) provides funding to support youth mentoring organizations that have a demonstrated partnership with a juvenile justice agency. The focus is to provide mentoring services to those youth screened as being low risk to public safety by a juvenile justice agency as part of an overall diversion approach with a goal of rehabilitation and accountability. This program is authorized and funded pursuant to Pub. L. No. 115-141, 132 Stat. 348, 423.
The goal of Project Hero is to improve the quality of life for at-risk and high-risk juvenile justice system-involved youth, families, and communities by directly influencing youth outcomes such as improved academic performance and reduced dropout rates, juvenile delinquency, substance use, and gang participation. To achieve this goal, COMPACT will continue to provide high-quality, evidence-based mentoring services tailored to the needs of at-risk and high-risk youth referred to the program through the Escondido Police Department or other law enforcement agencies. The purpose of matching youth with mentors is to reduce recidivism and support academic achievement and school attendance. The target population is youth ages 1217 who have been involved with the juvenile justice system and referred to the program by law enforcement. The targeted youth will have completed their juvenile diversion contract but have been identified as still at risk for reoffending or academic failure. Mentors will receive background checks and extensive training to support their work with the mentee, and mentees will receive both one-on-one and group mentoring over the course of a year.
OJJDP grant funding will provide program enhancements, including additional training, family and youth bilingual program orientations, bilingual marketing materials, monthly wraparound dinners for youth and families to promote family engagement, supportive services to help offset basic needs of youth and their families in the event of an emergency, and positive law enforcement interaction. Project Heros vision is to both expand and enhance COMPACTs successful Project Hero components and strategies to promote rehabilitation and a reduction in recidivism among juvenile justice system-involved youth. The Escondido Police Department will monitor the juveniles for any new arrests and COMPACT will monitor school records for any issues with academic performance and attendance. CA/NCF