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This bulletin examines aftercare services that provide youth with comprehensive health, mental health, education, family, and vocational services upon release from the juvenile justice system.
Aftercare is a promising program concept designed to minimize recidivism among youth released from out-of-home placement. Aftercare is defined as reintegrative services that prepare out-of-home placed juveniles for reentry into the community by making the necessary arrangements with the community which ensures the delivery of prescribed services and supervision. In addition to services and supervision the youth must receive intensive intervention while they are incarcerated, during their transition to the community and under community supervision. This bulletin examines the need for and describes how aftercare can address some of the problems that exist in the juvenile justice system; reviews relevant research in two distinct fields- intervention research and community restraint research; examines the aftercare concept and how it relates to system change; and identifies and compares nine model aftercare programs. This analysis offers practitioners a resource with which to strategically construct effective aftercare designs. References