March | April 2019

OJJDP Observes Second Chance Month
Reentry Starts Here: A Guide for Youth in Long-Term Juvenile Corrections and Treatment Programs

In 2016, more than 45,000 juvenile offenders were held in residential placement on any given day in the United States, according to OJJDP's Statistical Briefing Book. When these young people return to their communities, they are more likely to go on to lead productive and crime-free lives if they have access to services that can help them navigate that transition. To demonstrate the Administration’s commitment to improving reentry and reducing recidivism, President Donald Trump has proclaimed April as Second Chance Month.

Because a comprehensive system of reentry and aftercare services can make a critical difference for youth leaving confinement, OJJDP offers practical resources and funds research and programs to support reentering youth.

In fiscal year 2018, the Office awarded approximately $13 million to improve outcomes for youth who are transitioning back to their communities.

Under the Second Chance Act: Addressing the Needs of Incarcerated Parents With Minor Children program, OJJDP awarded $7 million to 10 jurisdictions to implement or expand family engagement activities geared toward parents and their minor children. To reduce recidivism and prevent violent crime, the funding also supports transitional reentry services upon release.

The Office also awarded nearly $4 million under its Second Chance Act: Ensuring Public Safety and Improving Outcomes for Youth in Confinement and While Under Community Supervision program. The grants are helping five jurisdictions to implement strategies for the increasing number of reentering youth who have co-occurring substance abuse problems and mental health disorders, as well as those who have been involved in gangs. The program is also funding training and technical assistance to improve community supervision practices for these youth.

In addition, OJJDP awarded nearly $1 million to Child Trends to conduct an impact and implementation evaluation of the Virginia Department of Juvenile Justice’s reentry improvement efforts. The Department is working to improve outcomes for reentering youth through various initiatives. Efforts include increasing family engagement, using risk-needs assessments to connect youth to services, and transforming case management procedures to ensure continuity of care during youth’s transition to their communities. Researchers will develop recommendations for improving reentry efforts nationwide based on the evaluation findings.

The Performance-based Standards Learning Institute received $1 million from OJJDP to develop a training and technical assistance program that will improve the capacity of reentry programs and state and local governments to collect, analyze, and report data.

To learn more about OJJDP's reentry work, visit the Office’s website at


On March 12, 2019, OJJDP presented a webinar titled “Spotlight on Family Engagement in Youth Reentry.” The webinar highlighted the promising practices of state and local agencies to engage families in supporting youth reentry efforts, both during and after their release from confinement. The webinar recording is available online.

OJJDP’s Reentry Starts Here: A Guide for Youth in Long-Term Juvenile Corrections and Treatment Programs serves as a toolkit for youth in placement as they prepare to reenter their communities. It provides resources to help youth set and attain their goals, whether that is returning to school, applying for housing, getting a job, or seeking support services. The guide also provides practical steps youth can take to overcome barriers commonly experienced upon reentry. Watch a video about the guide.

The Office’s Implementation Guide, or I-Guide, provides information on the beginning stages of implementing a juvenile reentry program. The I-Guide includes research on programs that offer comprehensive reentry services for youth while they are in a juvenile facility and continue upon their transition to the community.