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OJJDP Awards More Than $320 Million in Grants in Fiscal Year 2019

Students working on computers.

In fiscal year 2019, OJJDP made approximately 320 awards totaling more than $320 million to protect public safety, ensure offenders are held accountable, and empower youth to live productive and law-abiding lives. In addition, OJJDP grants supported states’ efforts to fulfill the core requirements of the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act. Following are highlights of OJJDP’s awards and activities.

Youth Mentoring Programs and Services: $83.1 Million

Through its Mentoring Opportunities for Youth initiative, the Office awarded more than $81 million in grants to 29 organizations in 18 states and the District of Columbia. The funding included $10 million specifically targeted to address the opioid epidemic and nearly $3 million designated for mentoring programs for youth involved in the juvenile justice system. A $2 million supplemental award allowed the National Mentoring Resource Center to continue offering comprehensive mentoring resources, research, and training materials to a nationwide audience through its website.

Missing and Exploited Children: $45.7 million

The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children (NCMEC) facilitates a coordinated national response to missing and sexually exploited children, operates a missing children hotline, and serves as the national clearinghouse for information and resources related to these children. More than $33.5 million was awarded to NCMEC to fund its operations and provide support, technical assistance, and training to assist law enforcement in locating and recovering missing and exploited children. Another $6 million was awarded to fund NCMEC’s National Resource Center and Clearinghouse, part of an interagency agreement between OJJDP and the U.S. Secret Service.

Grant funds totaling $4.4 million were awarded under the National AMBER Alert Training and Technical Assistance Program to help the AMBER Alert network improve law enforcement’s response to abducted children and encourage public participation in their recovery. Finally, an award of $1.8 million was provided to deliver training and technical assistance for missing and exploited children’s programs.

Assistance to States: $43 Million

OJJDP awarded $43 million to help states, territories, and the District of Columbia improve their juvenile justice systems. Of that amount, more than $37 million was awarded through the Formula Grants program under Title II of the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (JJDP) Act. The funds help state and local governments prevent juvenile crime and delinquency and assist states in meeting the JJDP Act’s core requirements. Nearly $6 million was awarded to continue the work of OJJDP’s Center for Coordinated Assistance to States. The center provides states with resources and training to plan, operate, and assess delinquency prevention, intervention, and juvenile justice system improvement projects to ensure they comply with the core requirements.

Internet Crimes Against Children: $36.1 Million

Predators searching online for unsupervised contact with minors present a significant threat to the safety of young people and a formidable challenge for law enforcement officials who must adapt their investigative techniques to a constantly evolving array of technology. OJJDP’s Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force program comprises 61 task forces representing more than 4,500 federal, state, and local law enforcement and prosecutorial agencies throughout the country. In FY 2019, OJJDP provided more than $29.7 million to fund this national network of task forces. An additional $5.86 million will support training and technical assistance and officer wellness programs for the task forces. Under the ICAC—Forensic Hiring Capacity Program for Wounded Veterans, OJJDP awarded $600,000 to three jurisdictions.

Drug Courts and the Opioid Crisis: $26 Million

OJJDP awarded nearly $7 million under the Opioid Affected Youth Initiative to six states and one federally recognized tribe. This program funds sites to develop a data-driven coordinated response for identifying and addressing challenges resulting from opioid abuse’s impact on youth and community safety. Another $1 million was awarded for training and technical assistance to states, local governments, and tribal jurisdictions in developing data-driven responses to opioid abuse.

OJJDP awarded just over $7 million across 11 awards under its Family Drug Court program. Nine awards totaling $3 million were provided under OJJDP’s Juvenile Drug Treatment Court program. OJJDP awarded another $8 million to provide training and technical support for the two programs.

Victims of Child Abuse: $22.5 Million

Nearly $22.5 million was awarded under OJJDP’s Victims of Child Abuse grant programs. These funds were awarded to enable national, regional, and local organizations to continue supporting children’s advocacy centers, multidisciplinary teams, and child abuse professionals who respond to children’s maltreatment across the United States. Of this total, more than $10.8 million was awarded to the National Children’s Alliance to fund local child advocacy centers, state chapters, and multidisciplinary teams that provide coordinated investigations and comprehensive responses to child abuse, and $5 million was awarded to fund four regional children’s advocacy centers that are helping communities respond to child abuse by providing training and technical assistance. The remaining $6.6 million in awards supported a range of other initiatives, including training and technical assistance for prosecutors handling child abuse cases, children’s advocacy centers that provide services for child pornography victims, and services to address child abuse cases on U.S. military installations.

Reentry Services: $11.2 Million

OJJDP awarded more than $11.2 million to fund reentry services for detained juveniles and incarcerated parents with children under 18. Over $6.7 million was awarded to nine jurisdictions under OJJDP’s Second Chance Act Youth Offender Reentry program. This program awards grants to improve reentry outcomes for incarcerated youth, encouraging collaboration between state agencies, local government, and community- and faith-based organizations. More than $4.5 million was awarded to seven jurisdictions under OJJDP’s Second Chance Act Addressing the Needs of Incarcerated Parents With Minor Children program, which supports the successful and safe transition of young fathers and mothers from detention, out-of-home placement, or incarceration to their families and communities.

Victims of Child Trafficking: $10.8 Million

To increase the availability of direct services for child and youth victims of commercial sexual exploitation and domestic sex trafficking, OJJDP provided more than $4 million to 9 organizations to support mentoring services for victims. A total of $750,000 was awarded for training and technical assistance to project sites funded under this program.

OJJDP also awarded $3.5 million to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children under an interagency agreement with the Office of Justice Programs’ Office for Victims of Crime. This agreement funds a project to enhance the center’s response to reports of child sex trafficking and provide training and technical assistance to individuals and law enforcement agencies in the prevention, investigation, prosecution, and treatment of cases involving child sex trafficking victims. Another $2.5 million was awarded to three organizations to enhance the technological investigative capacity and associated training of law enforcement in addressing child pornography, exploitation, and sex trafficking.

Court Appointed Special Advocates: $10.7 Million

Nearly $10.7 million was awarded to the National Court Appointed Special Advocate Association for membership, accreditation, and subgrants. This program provides advocacy for abused and neglected children—including foster care youth—in dependency hearings and supports other child welfare system stakeholders at all levels of government.

Anti-Gang Initiatives and Victim Support: $7.4 Million

OJJDP awarded nearly $7.4 million under four separate gang prevention, intervention, and education programs. Awards totaling $3.2 million through the Supporting Victims of Gang Violence program are facilitating the provision of victim assistance services to ensure that youth who are victims of gang violence are not traumatized further and have adequate supports to feel safe in their communities. Through its Youth Gang Desistance/Diversion program, the Office provided $2 million to law enforcement and prosecutorial agencies to support diversion activities and targeted incentives such as tattoo removal and life skill training for gang members who want to desist from gang activity. OJJDP awarded $1.34 million to six sites under the Youth Gang Suppression Implementation program to help jurisdictions establish a coordinated, multidisciplinary approach to suppressing youth gangs.

The Office provided more than $830,000 in supplemental funding to continue the work of the
National Gang Center, which provides comprehensive information, training, and technical assistance on community-based anti-gang initiatives.

Youth Violence and Victimization in Schools: $7.1 Million

Nine awards totaling more than $7.1 million were made under OJJDP’s Comprehensive School-Based Approach to Youth Violence and Victimization program. These grants provide funding to help communities prevent and reduce the incidence of school and community violence by holding offenders accountable, addressing victimization and trauma, and improving school safety and climate.

Juvenile Justice Research and Data Collection: $6.9 Million

OJJDP transferred $5.3 million to the National Institute of Justice (NIJ) as part of an interagency agreement to fund a variety of juvenile justice and public safety-related research and evaluation projects. These funds will be awarded in FY 2020 by NIJ. OJJDP also transferred $1.2 million to the U.S. Census Bureau to continue data collection activities under the biannual Census of Juveniles in Residential Placement and the Juvenile Residential Facility Census. These data collections provide valuable information about juveniles in residential placement and the facilities that hold them. OJJDP provided another $400,000 to the Bureau of Justice Statistics to archive and disseminate the Office’s data at the National Archive of Criminal Justice Data, the nation’s leading resource for secondary analysis of research data on crime and the juvenile and criminal justice system.

Tribal Youth Initiatives: $6.5 Million

Through the Tribal Youth Program, OJJDP awarded more than $3.1 million to nine geographically diverse grantees to support prevention, intervention, and treatment programs that benefit tribal youth. The Office awarded $1.75 million under the Tribal Juvenile Healing to Wellness Courts program to respond to alcohol and substance abuse among youth younger than age 21. The funding will help the five participating courts develop or enhance policies, procedures, assessment tools, and service models that address alcohol and substance use in tribal communities.

The Office also awarded nearly $1.4 million to the Tribal Law and Policy Institute to continue their efforts to prevent crime and delinquency and provide culturally appropriate training and technical assistance to indigenous youth. The grant includes support for courts, probation, prosecutors, and other stakeholders who respond to juvenile crime as well as a focus on prevention programs. OJJDP awarded $300,000 to the Rural Alaska Community Action Program to continue to provide comprehensive and culturally relevant training and technical assistance to help Alaska Native communities create, expand, and sustain programs and services for youth.

Youth With Sexual Behavioral Problems: $3.4 Million

More than $1.9 million was awarded to four organizations under OJJDP’s Supporting Effective Interventions for Adolescent Sex Offenders and Youth With Sexual Behavioral Problems program. Three project sites were awarded to develop a community-based, comprehensive approach to respond to youth with sexual behavior problems, their child victims and their families. The funding also provides for a training and technical assistance provider to support the project sites in developing intervention models. An additional $1.5 million was awarded to the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center to provide enhanced training and technical assistance to the Department of Defense Family Advocacy Program. This program trains and provides resources to those military professionals who respond to problematic sexual behavior in military children and youth residing both stateside and overseas.

Child Abuse Training for Judicial and Court Personnel: $2.7 Million

OJJDP’s Child Abuse Training for Judicial and Court Personnel Program provided nearly $2.7 million to the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges to improve juvenile justice and dependency systems’ response to child abuse and neglect, as well as child sexual exploitation and sex trafficking. This program provides judicial, legal, and social service professionals with training and technical assistance to improve their understanding of child abuse issues; their ability to prevent placement in foster care, when possible; and to reunify families after foster care placement. This funding also supports strategies to coordinate information and services across systems, as well as systematic efforts to reduce the length of time children spend in the system.

Juvenile Indigent Defense: $1.8 Million

OJJDP made three awards totaling nearly $1.8 million under its Enhancements for Juvenile Indigent Defense program. These awards help states and localities develop and implement specialized training for public and appointed defenders who provide services to juvenile defendants from arrest through postdisposition and reentry. The awards also help improve the data collection and reporting capacity of the juvenile court system while also analyzing the juvenile defense delivery system to identify critical program, practice, and policy needs. Finally, these awards help provide juvenile offenders with access to high-quality, specialized juvenile defense services.

Training for Juvenile Prosecutors: $1.5 Million

Another $1.5 million was awarded to three project sites and one training and technical assistance provider under OJJDP’s Addressing the Training Needs of Juvenile Prosecutors program. This funding allows states to develop or supplement existing training and professional development tailored to the unique needs and challenges related to juvenile prosecution.


For more information about the Office’s awards, visit OJJDP’s Funding webpage.

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President Trump Addresses Police Chiefs' Conference

On October 28, 2019, President Donald Trump addressed the International Association of Chiefs of Police (IACP) Annual Conference and Exposition in Chicago, IL. He also signed an executive order establishing a Commission on Law Enforcement and the Administration of Justice tasked with studying key issues facing law enforcement and best practices for recruiting, training, and supporting law enforcement officers. The commission will be led by Attorney General William Barr. A report and recommendations are scheduled to be delivered to the President next year.

The IACP Annual Conference and Exposition was held October 26–29. More than 16,000 public safety professionals attend this conference each year to learn new techniques, advance their knowledge, network with their peers, and equip their departments for ongoing success.

In a session titled “Gang Suppression Needs and Resources: A Law Enforcement Perspective,” representatives of OJJDP and other OJP bureaus, as well as the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS), shared information about training and technical assistance that is available to support law enforcement in suppressing gang activity. Katharine T. Sullivan, OJP Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General, and Phil Keith, Director of the COPS Office, offered introductory remarks.

OJJDP Senior Policy Advisor Scott Pestridge and National Gang Center Director Meena Harris provided an overview of resources available through OJJDP’s National Gang Center, which provides training and technical assistance to cities and jurisdictions, both rural and urban, with chronic and emerging gang problems. The session also described resources available through the Bureau of Justice Assistance’s National Training and Technical Assistance Center and the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services’ Collaborative Reform Initiative Technical Assistance Center.

In a discussion moderated by R. Sean Baldwin, a retired chief of the Fort Pierce, FL, Police Department, law enforcement professionals shared successes and challenges in addressing gang activity and offered recommendations for improving law enforcement’s ability to respond to emerging gang problems and create comprehensive solutions to prevent gang violence, reduce gang involvement, and combat gang-related crime.


For more information about IACP, visit the association’s website.

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November: National Native American Heritage Month

left quoteDuring National Native American Heritage Month, we affirm our commitment to working toward a society that fosters a deeper understanding and appreciation for the diversity of culture and history of the 573 federally recognized American Indian and Alaska Native nations in our country. right quote

—President Donald J. Trump,
Presidential Proclamation on National Native American Heritage Month, 2019


Every November, communities across the country celebrate the significant contributions of American Indians and Alaska Natives to our nation and renew their commitment to the well-being of youth and families in Indian country. Through its tribal youth programs and services, OJJDP works to promote public safety, reduce risk factors for delinquency, and promote positive life outcomes for youth. Following are a few examples of OJJDP’s work.

Peer Guides

Photo of UNITY Peer Guide Santana Bartholomew, member of the Pueblo of Pojoaque in New Mexico“My passion lies in working with youth—both in my community and across the country—to build and strengthen confidence, leadership skills, and cultural identity,” says UNITY Peer Guide Santana Bartholomew, who is a member of the Pueblo of Pojoaque in New Mexico. In addition to her work as a peer guide, Santana is coordinator of her community’s juvenile healing to wellness court, advisor and mentor for the Pojoaque Youth Empowerment Summer Program, and a member of the Tribal Youth Council.

Photo courtesy of UNITY, Inc.

Supported by OJJDP’s Intertribal Youth Development Initiative, United National Indian Tribal Youth (UNITY), Inc., has launched a Peer Guide Program that recently selected 12 young people to provide direction on OJJDP’s training and technical assistance efforts, work as project advisors on youth-developed projects, and serve as role models to their peers. The peer guides are currently developing and preparing to lead regional learning events and webinars focused on promoting positive youth development in Indian country.

Tribal Juvenile Healing to Wellness Courts

With the goal of reducing substance abuse and related delinquent behavior, juvenile healing to wellness courts use a team approach that brings together community healing resources with the tribal justice process. While holding youth accountable for delinquent behavior, the team provides structured and phased substance abuse treatment and rehabilitation services. A system of rewards and consequences (also called sanctions and incentives) may be used to support youth behavior change; this approach can be helpful for youth as they work toward developing new habits on their path to wellness.

Tribal Youth Program

OJJDP’s Tribal Youth Program supports the efforts of tribal governments to prevent juvenile delinquency and respond to and care for justice-involved youth. The program includes prevention services (e.g., school dropout prevention programs, afterschool programs); interventions for court-involved tribal youth (e.g., graduated sanctions, restitution, diversion); improvements to the tribal juvenile justice system (e.g., indigenous justice strategies, tribal youth courts, advocacy programs); and substance abuse prevention and mental health services.

Training and Technical Assistance

The OJJDP Tribal Youth Resource Center offers training and technical assistance to Tribal Youth Program and Tribal Juvenile Healing to Wellness Courts grantees, as well as to all interested federally recognized tribes. Through the center, OJJDP helps tribes develop effective and sustainable programs for reducing juvenile crime and promoting positive youth development. Support for new grantees includes a new grantee orientation webinar and a required initial strategic planning meeting.

The Resource Basket offers trainings, online resources, phone consultations, and community-based assistance to tribes and youth organizations that serve Alaska Native youth. The organization’s mission is to help rural communities foster the healthy development and well-being of Alaska Native youth.

logo of AMBER Alert in Indian countryMissing Children Cases in Indian Country

On July 30–August 1, 2019, OJJDP’s National AMBER ALERT in Indian Country Symposium brought together tribal leaders and representatives of OJJDP, the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, the AMBER Alert Training and Technical Assistance Program, and state AMBER Alert coordinators to exchange information and share best practices for implementing AMBER Alert plans in Indian country. OJJDP has supported the recent development of a website that features one-stop access to information and resources to help tribal communities coordinate their response to missing children cases.


Through the Mentoring Opportunities for Youth initiative, OJJDP promotes positive behaviors and the reduction of risk factors associated with delinquency and juvenile justice system involvement, such as alcohol and drug abuse, poor school attendance, and school failure. Mentoring activities include direct one-on-one, group, peer, or a combination of these types of mentoring services. OJJDP has directed grantees in the National Mentoring Programs category to develop and implement a plan to specifically provide mentoring services for tribal youth, and as a part of the Mentoring Opportunities for Youth initiative, tribes are eligible to apply for $1.25 million to support mentoring services for youth impacted by opioids.

Children's Advocacy Centers in Indian Country

On June 28, 2019, Attorney General Barr announced emergency funding to address the public safety crisis in rural Alaska. Recognizing that Alaska has the highest per capita crime rate in the country and the unique circumstances of Alaska’s geographical and jurisdictional landscape, the Attorney General authorized additional funding and several long-term measures to support village public safety and victim services. OJJDP has identified $14 million to support the development, expansion, and enhancement of Children’s Advocacy Centers to provide wraparound services, forensic interviews, and medical exams for American Indian and Alaska Native child victims. This will include an intentional focus to support rural Alaska as well as federally recognized tribes in the continental United States.


The President's proclamation of November as National Native American Heritage Month is available on the White House website.

To learn more about OJJDP’s tribal youth initiatives, visit the Office’s website.


Read UNITY Peer Guide Rory Wheeler’s reflections on his experience volunteering at the Native American Presidential Forum.

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OJJDP Convening Focuses on Gang Violence Prevention and Suppression

Representatives of OJJDP and sites participating in the Office’s gang  suppression and Safe and Thriving Communities initiatives gather for a group  photo at an October 22–24, 2019, training in Pittsburgh, PA.Representatives of OJJDP and sites participating in the Office’s gang suppression and Safe and Thriving Communities initiatives gather for a group photo at an October 22–24, 2019, training in Pittsburgh, PA.



On October 22–24, 2019, OJJDP hosted a training in Pittsburgh, PA, for grantees in jurisdictions with chronic and emerging gang problems. In general sessions and breakout workshops led by OJJDP staff and other gang experts, a framework was introduced for coordinated action to help communities prevent and reduce street gang violence and crime. Administrator Caren Harp and Associate Administrator James Antal offered opening remarks.

The convening included grantees and representatives from three sites that are implementing an OJJDP fiscal year (FY) 2018 gang suppression initiative—Clark County, NV; Dallas County, TX; and Suffolk County, NY. The initiative supports law enforcement and other community stakeholders in deterring youth from gun and gang violence using proven approaches such as the OJJDP Comprehensive Gang Model and Group Violence Intervention, formerly known as the Boston Ceasefire model. The initiative is part of the Department of Justice’s Project Safe Neighborhoods suite of programs.

left quoteThe most eye-opening takeaway for us was what our priorities should be going forward. We realized that we will have to focus on the logistical part of implementation—forming a steering committee and effective data collection—but that we are also going to have to think outside the box in terms of getting the right key players involved. It was great to meet new people from both the gang suppression and Safe and Thriving Communities initiatives, which created networking and resource-sharing opportunities.right quote

—Nadin-Sarah Salkić, Assistant District Attorney
Gang Unit, Dallas County District Attorney’s Office

In addition, representatives from five sites that are participating in OJJDP’s FY 2017 Safe and Thriving Communities initiative—Anne Arundel County, MD; Cumberland County, NJ; Gary, IN; St. Louis, MO; and Richmond, VA—attended the training to learn more about best practices and evidence-based strategies to carry out the gang-related component of their work. Safe and Thriving Communities supports local efforts to develop prevention, public health, and safety plans to address youth violence. The work encompasses prevention, employment assistance, community development, deterrence, enforcement, and reentry.

The meeting featured several general sessions in which grantees from both OJJDP programs came together to share their successes, challenges, and lessons learned from their anti-gang efforts. These sessions included panel discussions and question-and-answer opportunities as well as presentations by experts on a range of gang-related topics, such as the resources offered by OJJDP’s National Gang Center, the importance of collaboration with juvenile justice system partners, and an overview of the types of street gangs that exist in different regions of the United States.

“OJJDP wanted to provide an opportunity for peer exchange between the two sets of grantees,” said Associate Administrator James Antal. “A major goal for this training was to facilitate networking, peer exchange, and cross-site collaboration.”

The meeting also offered workshops customized to the training needs of each OJJDP grant program. For the gang suppression program, OJJDP and other gang experts provided training on data collection, the development of a strategic action plan, best practices in developing a law enforcement task force, and an overview of the online systems for investigating gang activity.

Grantees from the Safe and Thriving Communities initiative participated in workshops that discussed the influence of social media on gang activity and gang conflict, how to build a communitywide culture that changes norms surrounding violence, strengthening police-community relationships, effective cross-sector approaches to ensure successful youth reentry, and sustainability planning.

At the conclusion of the convening, each grantee collaborated with OJJDP staff and other gang experts to develop short- and long-term action plans. “These plans will be critical to structuring future activity and monitoring program progress,” said Mr. Antal.


Learn more about the National Gang Center, which offers an array of resources and tools, including online trainings, videos, and information about OJJDP's Comprehensive Gang Model.

For information about research findings on gang activity and gang prevention, read the literature review in OJJDP’s Model Programs Guide. See also the guide’s evaluations of programs that address gang violence and crime.

OJJDP’s Gang Violence Prevention webpage and video offer information about OJJDP resources and programs that prevent and suppress gang violence and recruitment.

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Staff Spotlight: Associate Administrator James Antal

James Antal, OJJDP Associate Administrator.James Antal, OJJDP Associate Administrator.James Antal leads OJJDP’s Special Victims and Violent Offenders (SVVO) Division, which administers policies and programs that focus on protecting children against victimization, preventing and responding to youth violence, and holding offenders appropriately accountable.

“Youth mentoring—a consistent, positive relationship between an adult or older peer and youth—can make all the difference in the life of an at-risk young person,” said Mr. Antal. “Our Office supports mentoring for a diverse youth population, including tribal youth, youth impacted by opioids, and children of incarcerated parents. We’re working every day to improve the quality and effectiveness of youth mentoring through the National Mentoring Resource Center’s training and technical assistance that promotes evidence-based practices for the mentoring field.”

In addition, Mr. Antal and his staff play an important role in enhancing the law enforcement response to missing and exploited children through the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, the AMBER Alert program, and the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force program.


left quoteFor several years, OJJDP and the Office of Justice Programs have coordinated a National Law Enforcement Training on Child Exploitation. This is a vitally important resource for law enforcement investigators, prosecutors, and digital forensic examiners who work to combat technology-facilitated crimes against children.right quote

—Associate Administrator James Antal

Mr. Antal oversees programs that provide services for children and youth who are victims of child sexual exploitation and domestic sex trafficking. The SVVO Division’s Victims of Child Abuse Act programs help communities respond effectively to child abuse through children’s advocacy centers, court appointed special advocates, and specialized training for judicial personnel.

Through its gang suppression initiatives, the SVVO Division and OJJDP’s National Gang Center provide planning and implementation support to communities with chronic or emerging gang problems. The National Gang Center provides best‐practice information, training, and strategic tools to prevent and suppress criminal street gang activity. Mr. Antal’s division is also working to increase the availability of direct support services for young victims of gang-related violence and their families, and to develop comprehensive prevention and intervention approaches that address violence in homes, schools, and communities.


Before assuming the position of OJJDP associate administrator, Mr. Antal served at OJJDP as a deputy administrator in the Demonstration Program Division. This division managed congressional earmarks, research projects, and other special initiatives, including mentoring and tribal youth programs. During this time, Mr. Antal was the designated federal official for the Attorney General’s Advisory Committee on American Indian/Alaska Native Children Exposed to Violence, and he received the Assistant Attorney General’s award for his work on this initiative. Previously, Mr. Antal worked in the OJJDP State Relations and Assistance Division as a program manager. In addition to managing formula grants for states, he led a workgroup to create the position of a national juvenile justice specialist and served on the compliance monitoring team conducting audits of states to ensure compliance with the core protections of the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act.

Before joining OJJDP, Mr. Antal served as the state juvenile justice specialist at the Maryland Governor’s Office of Crime Control and Prevention. His work in the Governor’s Office included managing OJJDP pass-through funds as well as fulfilling the role of disproportionate minority contact coordinator. Mr. Antal pursued his undergraduate studies at Millersville University in Pennsylvania. He received a master’s degree from the University of Maryland School of Social Work.

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Stakeholder’s Corner: Supporting Vermont Youth and Families Impacted by the Opioid Crisis

By Chris Hultquist, Executive Director
The Mentor Connector

Picture of a mentor and mentee from The Mentor Connector playing their guitars together.Mentor Geneva and mentee Jaedyn were matched through The Mentor Connector in Rutland County, VT.

Vermont has been overwhelmed by the opioid crisis: In the past 5 years alone, opioid overdose deaths in our state have increased by about 250 percent. Emergency department discharges for heroin overdose have increased by 2,500 percent.

The crisis has seriously impacted our young people. In Rutland County, where The Mentor Connector is located, more than 50 percent of those who receive treatment for substance abuse are between the ages of 20 and 24. Many of these young people grew up in homes surrounded by violence, stress, and substance abuse, factors that heighten the risk of developing a substance abuse problem later in life.

Established in 2004, The Mentor Connector guides more than 150 vulnerable children, youth, and young adults in western Vermont through life-changing friendships to build goals, character, and skills to be successful in life. We have mentored more than 1,000 young people, collaborated with hundreds of local businesses and organizations to support mentoring, and assisted 25 community organizations and schools in establishing mentoring programs.

Recognizing that substance abuse is often a problem spanning generations, we launched our Opioid Family Mentoring Program in January 2018, which couples a family mentor with one-on-one youth mentors to support family preservation. Families participating in the program have one parent in treatment through a local recovery program. Our goal is to help families build the skills and resources to promote a healthier family lifestyle and prevent youth from perpetuating the cycle of drug abuse. This unique model of support has led to a mentor-match length of 4.1 years, which is 5 times the national average. The medical field is proficient at reducing substance abuse, but there is a challenge regarding the “other pieces”—providing supports for changing one’s social world, restructuring one’s life, and finding new friends and a new community. The Mentor Connector’s Opioid Family Mentoring Program bridges that gap.

left quoteI never realized that even as an adult I definitely need a mentor. The Family Mentoring Program truly helped me with my parenting, goal setting, and even helped me find a new job, which I desperately needed. But the one thing I will take away from this experience is having someone to talk to who wasn’t a professional, but a trusted friend. I used to be that person who wouldn’t go to anyone for help. Now, I have no problem asking.right quote

—Matt, age 32, parent

Our family mentor meets weekly with the family to develop family goals; reduce barriers for access to urgent care, mental health, and preventive dental care; and build and maintain healthy community connections. Every youth in the family is also provided a one-on-one mentor, who meets weekly with the youth to develop a trusting relationship and use teachable moments and activities to support the youth’s social, emotional, educational, and vocational growth. This team effort is indispensable to carrying out this challenging work.

Our mentors go through our high-quality mentor training with additional specialized training in substance abuse, motivational interviewing, Adverse Childhood Experiences, trauma, and mental health. We look at the developmental assets of each youth, their current social supports, their life experiences, and resiliency. We use all of that in the mentor-mentee matching process to help the mentor understand what kinds of supports would be useful.

We design our goals for young people around life skills, educational curiosity, and workforce development. We work with community businesses and local colleges to open up opportunities through job shadowing, internships, and educational advancement. We involve our kids in the Department of Labor’s classes in résumé writing and a local bank’s course in financial literacy. It’s important that young people in recovery develop relationships with other safe adults because at some point, the mentor relationship will end. As that happens, and they are able to advocate for themselves, they begin to see themselves as a self-sufficient and productive member of the larger community.

Simply having fun is an important ingredient of our success. Research has shown that for those in opiate recovery there is, among other things, a lack of awareness about how to have fun. Previously, getting high was the source of pleasure in their lives. It’s about changing old patterns of behavior. Our youth mentors plan enjoyable activities with their mentees. Together, they may play basketball, go canoeing, create videos on the computer, or go to the movies. Depending on the young person’s interests, the mentor may arrange a trip to the local animal shelter or museum. Every other week, we hold group recreational events for our youth, where they all get together and enjoy bowling, mini-golf, laser tag, and other activities. And quarterly, all of our youth and families come together for dinners, barbeques, and holiday events.

Resiliency, self-sufficiency, a new community of friends and associates, and hope for the future. These are the changes we are seeing every day in our youth and families. We are deeply grateful to OJJDP for its partnership and support of this life-transforming work.


To learn more about The Mentor Connector’s Opioid Family Mentoring Program, watch the OJJDP National Mentoring Resource Center webinar “Mentoring Youth Impacted by Opioids.”


Points of view or opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the U.S. Department of Justice.

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Upcoming Events

Criminal Connections: Child Pornography and Child Sexual Abuse: January 27–28, 2020

NCJTC logoDuring this training sponsored by the National Criminal Justice Training Center, participants will learn about the additional trauma that child victims experience when child pornography is involved in sexual abuse cases. The training, to be held in West Palm Beach, FL, will explore investigative strategies that address the relationship between child sexual abuse and child pornography to supplement an investigation and corroborate victim statements. Registration information is available online.

The training will also be held February 24–25, 2020, in Dallas, TX.

Beyond Google: Discovering Online Resources in Investigations: January 29–30, 2020

Offered by the National Criminal Justice Training Center, this training will discuss open-source online intelligence and information and how to leverage free platforms, databases, and web applications to further investigations of criminal cases. Participants will learn techniques to optimize results using online search engines and Internet resources, and how to complete and serve search warrants for electronic information and databases. The training will be held in West Palm Beach, FL. Registration information is available online.

National Mentoring Summit: January 29–31, 2020

mentor logoThe 10th annual National Mentoring Summit will take place in Washington, DC. Organized by MENTOR: The National Mentoring Partnership and supported by OJJDP, the summit will showcase exemplary program models, collaborations, research, and innovations that have positive implications for strengthening the mentoring field. The summit is the only national convening of youth mentoring professionals, researchers, philanthropic investors, and government and civic leaders that is designed to strengthen and expand quality mentoring relationships for young people across the country. Registration information is available online.

Forensic Interviewing of Children: February 10–14, 2020


Presented by the National Children’s Advocacy Center (NCAC), this training is intended for professionals with less than 2 years of experience conducting forensic interviews of children, experienced child abuse professionals seeking to sharpen existing skills, and professionals who want to learn about the current NCAC Child Forensic Interview Structure. The course will be held in Huntsville, AL. Registration information is available online.

The training will also be offered in Huntsville on April 20–24 and June 22–24.

UNITY midyear conference logoUNITY Midyear Conference: February 14–17, 2020

United National Indian Tribal Youth, known as UNITY, will hold its midyear conference in Tempe, AZ. More than 300 attendees are expected for the annual gathering that promotes a program focused on youth leadership development, training for youth leader advisors, networking, and cultural exchange. Registration information is available online.

Registration is also open for the National UNITY Conference to be held July 3–7, 2020, in Washington, DC.

Conducting Child Abuse Investigations: February 24–28, 2020


To be held in Newport, RI, this no-cost training will offer the latest information on the investigation and prosecution of child abuse cases using a multidisciplinary team approach. Attendees will learn about medical evidence, techniques for interviewing child victims/witnesses as well as adult suspects/witnesses, and legal issues and considerations in child physical and sexual abuse cases. The training is offered by the National Criminal Justice Training Center. The registration deadline is December 30. Additional registration information is available online.

The training will also be offered April 27–May 1 in San Diego, CA, and July 27–31 in Saint Louis, MO.

National Symposium on Sexual Behavior of Youth: February 25–27, 2020

NCSBY logoHosted by the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center’s National Center on the Sexual Behavior of Youth, this symposium is designed to help professionals in youth-serving professions effectively identify and intervene to address youth’s problematic sexual behavior. The symposium is designed for psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, physicians, nurses, law enforcement personnel, juvenile justice and court professionals, and other professionals who work with youth who have problematic sexual behavior. The event will be held in Norman, OK. Registration information is available online.

Victim Advocacy Training: February 25–27, 2020


This training is designed for victim advocates who are working with children and families in a children’s advocacy center setting. Offered by the National Children’s Advocacy Center, the training will include foundational sessions on the criminal justice system, the dynamics of child abuse, crisis development and resolution, effective listening techniques, the impact of trauma on a child, the rights of crime victims, cultural considerations, and intervention strategies. All sessions are presented by experienced professionals currently working in the field of child abuse intervention and prevention at the National Children's Advocacy Center. Registration information is available online.

National Summit on Youth Homelessness: March 2–3, 2020

NN4Y logoThe National Network for Youth will hold its seventh annual summit in Washington, DC. This event focuses on how government agencies, policymakers, young leaders, service providers, and other experts can collaborate to prevent and respond to youth homelessness. Sessions will include discussions of practices, resources, and strategies that are relevant to participants’ work in addressing youth homelessness. Registration information is available online.

Multidisciplinary Team Response to Child Sex Trafficking: March 9–12, 2020


This no-cost training, offered by the National Criminal Justice Training Center, will improve multidisciplinary team (MDT) responses to child sex trafficking cases and assist those wanting to establish a formal MDT in their community to effectively respond to child sex trafficking. Subject matter experts will work with teams to identify gaps and develop short- and long-term response plans. The training will be held in Providence, RI. Registration information is available online.

This training will also take place May 4–7 in Columbus, OH, August 31–September 3 in Memphis, TN, and November 16–19 in Denver, CO.

Child Homicide Investigations: March 16–17, 2020

The National Criminal Justice Training Center will hold this training in Blanco, TX. It will focus on understanding and building relationships between forensic pathologists, homicide investigators, and prosecutors to successfully investigate and prosecute child homicide cases. The training is designed for prosecutors as well as court system, law enforcement, social work, and victim service professionals. Registration information is available online.

The training will also be held May 18–19 in Aurora, CO, and June 1–2 in Ponderay, ID.

36th International Symposium on Child Abuse: March 23–26, 2020

logo of 36th International Symposium on  Child AbuseHosted by the National Children’s Advocacy Center, this symposium will provide expert training and numerous networking opportunities to professionals in the child maltreatment field. The event will offer tracks on a range of topics, including child protective services, forensic interviewing, human trafficking/sexual exploitation, law enforcement, victim advocacy, and prevention. The symposium will be held in Huntsville, AL. Registration information is available online.

Protecting Our Children National American Indian Conference on Child Abuse and Neglect:
March 29–April 1, 2020

NICWA logoThis conference, sponsored by the National Indian Child Welfare Association, will be held in Denver, CO. It will feature more than 80 workshops and 4 general sessions led by speakers ranging from high-ranking federal officials to youth who have experienced child-serving systems. Topics include child welfare, foster care, and adoption services; children’s mental health; judicial and legal affairs; and youth and family involvement. Registration information is available online.

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News in Brief

Fiscal Year 2020 Coordinated Tribal Assistance Solicitation Includes Two OJJDP Funding Opportunities

On December 4, 2019, the Department of Justice released the fiscal year (FY) 2020 Coordinated Tribal Assistance Solicitation, which enables tribes, Alaska Native villages, and tribal consortia to submit a single application for the Department of Justice’s competitive grant programs, known as purpose areas. CTAS includes two OJJDP funding opportunities:

Applications for CTAS are submitted online through the Department’s Grants Management System (GMS). Applicants must register with GMS before submitting an application. The application deadline is 9 p.m. EST, Feb. 25, 2020. For more information about CTAS, visit the Department of Justice website.

OJJDP-Funded Research Presented at American Society of Criminology Conference

The 75th annual meeting of the American Society of Criminology, held November 13–16, 2019, included presentations on OJJDP-supported research and evaluation projects as part of the event’s “NIJ [National Institute of Justice] Day.” The meeting, held in San Francisco, CA, featured the theme “Criminology in the New Era: Confronting Injustice and Inequalities.”

A presentation titled “Studies of State-Level Juvenile Justice System Improvement Efforts” offered findings from OJJDP research that examined whether certain juvenile justice policies and practices produce better outcomes for youth, improve public safety, and achieve a greater return on taxpayer investments. The panel discussed the impact of Kentucky’s Senate Bill 200, which included policy changes to provide more targeted treatment to youth who come in contact with the juvenile justice system; Virginia’s Regional Service Coordinator Model, designed to reduce disparities in services in rural communities; and Maryland’s Accountability and Incentives Management system, a graduated response approach for youth under community supervision. Discussion included possible policy and practice implications for other jurisdictions seeking to implement similar changes.

The session “Multi-Site Studies of Risk and Needs Assessments in Juvenile Justice” discussed a portfolio of OJJDP-funded research and evaluations examining risk and needs assessment instruments in juvenile justice. The panel highlighted factors that promote effective implementation of these instruments and recommendations for improving practice; outcomes associated with the implementation of risk and needs assessments and risk-need-responsivity approaches to case management; alternative benchmarks, measurement, and analytic procedures to evaluate risk and needs assessments; and methods for optimizing risk and needs assessments to improve their predictive performance.

AMBER Alert Website Updated

As the current National AMBER Alert Coordinator, Katharine T. Sullivan, Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General for the Office of Justice Programs, assists states in the development of state AMBER Alert plans and provides guidance on the issuance and dissemination of AMBER Alerts. The purpose of the state plans is to notify the public and law enforcement of child abductions and to coordinate search efforts for missing children.

In support of the National Coordinator, the Office of Justice Programs has updated the America's Missing: Broadcast Emergency Response (AMBER) Alert website. As the official repository of AMBER Alert information, this website continues to provide a brief history of the program, news and messages about the program, guidelines for issuing Alerts, links to state contacts, and information and resources to support the AMBER Alert program.

The website links to resources that support the AMBER Alert program through national partners and OJJDP grantees. These partners include the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, AMBER Alert Training and Technical Assistance Program, Federal Communications Commission, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency. The updated website now features enhanced information on AMBER Alert in Indian Country. Information includes access to the AMBER Alert in Indian Country website, a summary of the AMBER Alert in Indian Country Initiative, and other training and technical assistance resources.

New Issue of The AMBER Advocate Newsletter Now Available

OJJDP has released the latest issue of The AMBER Advocate newsletter. This issue includes features articles about:

The AMBER Advocate newsletter is available online.

Netsmartz into the cloud logoNetSmartz Features New Online Safety Product for Children

The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children’s online safety education program, Netsmartz, provides age-appropriate activities to help teach children how to be safer online. Netsmartz has launched a new video series for children, Into the Cloud, which features episodes on different elements of online safety, from strategies for handling cyberbullying to recognizing and reporting unsafe and inappropriate interactions and content.

Entries Sought for 2020 National Missing Children’s Day Poster Contest

The winning poster for the 2019 National Missing Children's Day poster contestShown above is the winning poster for the 2019 National Missing Children's Day poster contest. This artwork will inspire the poster and artwork for the 2020 commemoration.

With an annual theme of “Bringing Our Missing Children Home Safely,” each year OJJDP invites fifth graders to participate in the Missing Children’s Day poster contest. The annual contest creates an opportunity for schools, law enforcement, and child advocates to discuss the issue of missing and exploited children with youth, parents, and guardians and to promote child safety.

Each state hosts its own poster competition, and the winning poster from each state is submitted to OJJDP in a contest to select the national winner. OJJDP invites the child who designed the winning poster, his or her teacher and parents, and the state clearinghouse manager to Washington, DC, to participate in the National Missing Children’s Day commemoration in May.

The winning poster serves as the inspiration for the National Missing Children's Day poster and artwork for the following year. Prospective participants should check with their state contest manager for the submission deadline. The National Missing Children's Day ceremony will be held on May 20, 2020. Contest rules, contact information for state contest managers, discussion materials, and additional information are available in the contest packet.

Data Snapshot Examines Trends in Youth Suicide

Thumbnail of characteristics and trends of youth victims of suicide and homicide data snapshot.The OJJDP Statistical Briefing Book has added a Data Snapshot that provides a look at characteristics and trends of youth victims of suicide and homicide. The Snapshot draws on data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Fatal Injury Reports. Suicide rates more than doubled for each race and ethnicity group between 2007 and 2017. A larger proportion of youth suicide victims than youth homicide victims were younger than age 15, female, and white in 2017. Although the disparity in youth suicide rates decreased since 1990, the male rate was more than twice the female rate in 2017.

One Program and Two Practices Rated “Effective” by OJJDP Model Programs Guide and CrimeSolutions.gov

Protecting Strong African American Families is a program that is designed to improve family functioning and enhance youth development by targeting parents’ relationships and parenting skills. For the intervention group, there were statistically significant increases in levels of parental monitoring and positive self-concept, as well as statistically significant decreases in conduct problems and substance use initiation. There were no significant effects for racial pride socialization.

Cognitive behavioral therapy is a problem-focused, therapeutic approach that attempts to help people identify and change dysfunctional beliefs, thoughts, and patterns that contribute to their problem behaviors. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Anger-Related Problems in Children and Adolescents is rated “effective” for reducing aggression and anger expression, and improving self-control, problem-solving, and social competencies in children and adolescents.

Preventive Child Maltreatment Programs are designed to prevent physical child abuse or neglect by educating expectant and new parents in parenting skills, coping with stressors, and stimulating child development. The practice is rated “effective” for preventing child abuse, neglect, and maltreatment.

November: National Runaway Prevention Month

Image of Runaway Youth Prevention curriculum.Youth run away or become homeless for many reasons, including abuse, neglect, abandonment, or release from the juvenile justice system back into their communities without having stable housing arrangements. OJJDP remains committed to collaborating with partners to improve information dissemination among local and national stakeholders and improve services provided to these youth. OJJDP’s juvenile reentry toolkit includes guidance on how to identify and address a youth’s housing needs as part of the transition planning process. Watch OJJDP’s Runaway Youth Prevention webinar. To access OJJDP's Runaway and Homeless Youth page, visit the Office’s website.

The National Runaway Safeline, the federally designated national communication system for runaway and homeless youth, has a database of more than 9,000 resources to connect youth and concerned parents to local support. The Safeline’s Let’s Talk: Runaway Prevention Curriculum is a free, interactive course that informs young people about alternatives to running away and helps them build life skills to resolve problems without resorting to running away or unsafe behavior.

For information on the National Network for Youth’s 2020 Summit on Youth Homelessness, see the Upcoming Events section of the newsletter.

Read the Office of Justice Programs blog, “The Invisible Faces of Runaway and Homeless Youth.”

logo of 2020 Naational Mentoring Month

MENTOR Offers Resources for Organizing a National Mentoring Month Event

Launched in 2002 by MENTOR: The National Mentoring Partnership and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, National Mentoring Month in January is designed to raise public awareness about the need for mentors.

National partners work with local leaders to organize special events in their communities supported by local media outlets and public officials. These events encourage interested adults to put their concern for young people into action by becoming mentors. Resources for organizing a mentoring event—including toolkits for corporate engagement, public advocacy, and media coverage—are available on the MENTOR website.

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News From the Coordinating Council on Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention
Seal of Coordinating Council on Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention

On December 10, 2019, OJJDP hosted a public meeting of the Coordinating Council on Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. The meeting highlighted OJJDP, Department of Labor, and Department of Housing and Urban Development programs that support mentoring services for at-risk and delinquent youth. In addition, the event featured testimonials from mentees on the positive impact mentoring can have on a young person’s growth and development.

OJJDP Associate Administrator James Antal reported that the Office has awarded nearly $957 million in grants to mentoring organizations between fiscal years (FYs) 2008 and 2019. In FY 2019 alone, through its Mentoring Opportunities for Youth initiative, the Office awarded more than $81 million in grants. OJJDP’s mentoring work focuses on improving the effectiveness of youth mentoring services. “It’s really focusing on quality and making sure that program mentors are properly trained, that they are supported, and that the [mentor-mentee] matches are of high quality,” said Mr. Antal. To enhance the quality of mentoring services, OJJDP's National Mentoring Resource Center provides training and technical assistance as well as a wealth of information and resources to mentoring practitioners. The center’s resources are developed and overseen by a board of nationally renowned researchers with expertise in what works in youth mentoring.

Photo of Jennifer Kemp (r.), Director of Youth Services in the Department of Labor’s Office of Workforce Investment, and Maria-Lana Queen (l.), Liaison for Federal Interagency Youth Initiatives at the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Office of Public and Indian Housing. Jennifer Kemp (r.), Director of Youth Services in the Department of Labor’s (DOL’s) Office of Workforce Investment, and Maria-Lana Queen (l.), Liaison for Federal Interagency Youth Initiatives at the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD’s) Office of Public and Indian Housing, discussed DOL and HUD programs that include mentoring components.
Jennifer Kemp, Director of Youth Services in the Department of Labor’s Office of Workforce Investment, offered a presentation on three DOL workforce development initiatives—Reentry Employment Opportunities, the YouthBuild program, and the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act Youth program. These programs incorporate youth mentoring into an array of supportive services that include educational skills training, high school diploma or equivalency preparation, career exploration, and leadership development. “We know from our work . . . that mentoring does make a difference, and we do have better outcomes for youth who have been engaged in mentoring,” said Ms. Kemp.

Following Ms. Kemp’s presentation, Maria-Lana Queen, Liaison for Federal Interagency Youth Initiatives in the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD’s) Office of Public and Indian Housing shared information about HUD programs that embrace youth mentoring approaches as one component in their overall service delivery. HUD awards funding to the nation’s more than 3,200 public housing authorities, which are primarily responsible for providing HUD-assisted housing. The housing authorities also provide an array of services to help low-income families achieve economic mobility and self-sufficiency. HUD’s Jobs Plus Initiative focuses on work readiness, job placement, and technology skills; the Resident Opportunities and Self-Sufficiency (ROSS) Service Coordination offers comprehensive case management and referral to services, including opportunities for positive youth development; ROSS for Education supports post-secondary education and financial literacy; and the Juvenile Reentry Assistance Program provides legal assistance to support justice-involved youth.

The meeting concluded with a panel discussion featuring two pairs of mentees and mentors who participate in OJJDP-supported national mentoring programs.

Big Brothers Big Sisters mentee Frankie Luzio and mentor Christina Garza of the FBI’s Houston, TX, Field Office enjoy a light-hearted moment during a panel discussion on the benefits of mentoring. Big Brothers Big Sisters mentee Frankie Luzio and mentor Christina Garza of the FBI’s Houston, TX, Field Office enjoy a light-hearted moment during a panel discussion on the benefits of mentoring.
Frankie Luzio, a senior at the High School for Law and Justice in Houston, TX, is currently paired through Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS) with mentor Christina Garza, a public affairs specialist in the FBI’s Houston field office. Frankie and other students from his high school visit the FBI field office once a month to get first-hand exposure to the FBI’s work and to engage with their mentors. The monthly visit includes presentation of FBI case studies and other activities as well as an opportunity for Ms. Garza and Frankie to talk informally over lunch. BBBS often organizes a fun group activity as well. Frankie said the monthly visit to the FBI gives him and his mentor “a chance to catch up on things, like how college applications are going and any questions I may have. . . . She has a lot of information.” The two share a bond that goes beyond academic and career planning. “It’s like catching up with a good friend,” Frankie said.

The panel discussion also included remarks from Anna Piccirilli, Director of Academic Success at Boys and Girls Clubs of Annapolis and one of her young mentees, Amira. Amira is in the fifth grade at Germantown (MD) Elementary School and a member of the Wiley H. Bates Boys and Girls Club in Annapolis. She goes to the club almost every day and has participated in a wealth of activities, including STEM Mentoring, Smart Girls, Healthy Habits, and Rooted in Reading. “My favorite part is getting to spend time with Ms. Anna and her helping me with homework and problems I have going on at home and problems I have with people at Boys and Girls Club,” said Amira. “You get to do different fun activities and your homework. If you’re struggling with your homework, there’s always somebody there to help you.”

The Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act of 1974, as amended, established the Council as an independent body to coordinate federal programs related to delinquency prevention and missing and exploited children. The Council comprises 9 ex officio members, 4 affiliate members, and 10 nonfederal practitioner members named by the President and Congress. The Attorney General is the ex officio Chair of the Council and the Administrator of OJJDP is the ex officio Vice Chair. Additional ex officio members include the Secretaries of the Departments of Health and Human Services (HHS), Labor, Education, Homeland Security, and Housing and Urban Development; the Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy; and the Chief Executive Officer of the Corporation for National and Community Service. In addition, four affiliate federal agencies are represented on the Council: the Departments of Agriculture, Defense, and Interior, through their respective Secretaries and designees; and HHS’ Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, through its Administrator. In accordance with the Federal Advisory Committee Act, the Council holds public meetings up to four times a year in which members discuss activities to facilitate and support cross-agency coordination.

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