Back to a Future Initiative

 

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Program Summary:

 

Palm Beach County received the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP) 2013 2nd Chance Act Grant.  As a result, the Back To A Future (BTAF) Initiative was developed to enhance the reentry process for juveniles in our County.   BTAF helps youth who are returning home from a residential commitment program reenter Palm Beach County.  BTAF’s goal is to reduce recidivism by providing youth with the necessary services and programs that will make them successful.  The BTAF process begins at the time of commitment and continues until a successful transition.  Providers include Gulf Stream Goodwill, The Lord’s Place and Choice to Change. 

 

Eligibility:

1. Youth must be enrolled prior to release and prior to their 18th birthday
2. Youth must be returning home from a DJJ residential commitment program or Gun Club (County Sentenced)
3. Youth must be assessed as Moderate to High risk (based on the Positive Achievement Change Tool)

 

Menu Services:

(Services are based on need)

  • Case Management- youth is provided with a Transition Specialist who provides case management including help with obtaining ID, social security cards, bus passes, applying for medical benefits, and assisting youth with services outlined in the Transition Plan including making referrals for mentoring and pro-social activities. 
  • Goodwill works - this program covers all necessary areas to improve youth’s employability including resume writing, interviewing skills, and employment soft skills. Youth obtain a Work Readiness Certificate upon completion.
  • Life Skills- this program uses role play, games, open conversation and fun exercises to teach participants how to handle anger, deal with domestic abuse, avoid drugs and alcohol and resolve conflict.
  • Pre-GED & GED assistance- Career Navigator connects to pre-GED courses in the community.  Once youth are ready to take the GED, assistance is provided to set up GED testing.
  • Education goals assistance- Career Navigator assists with placing youth in school, vocational school, college, and other educational settings.  Youth are also helped with any barriers to education including literacy classes and tutoring. 
  • Job Placement- the Employment Specialist works with youth to address barriers to employment.  Youth are assisted with job placement, including On-the-Job Training. 
  • Choice to Change 102 (Family Intervention)- includes family educational intervention to assist in building healthy choices and relationships with youth’s family, self, and others.  This course encourages families to be a part of their youth’s reentry.  Components are: Relational needs, Character Improvement, Influences, Healthy and unhealthy traits in Relationships and Family Dynamics, Dangers of Marijuana, Alcohol and other drugs, Conflict Resolution, Anger Management and Healthy Communication skills.
  • Choice to Change 104- designed to mentor youth needing community service hours and to pay restitution. Participant will volunteer at various projects and events throughout Palm Beach County, Choice to Change will sponsor their restitution and/or court costs. Any of the funds that are earned by the Youth in the Choice to Change 104 program will be toward the restitution and/or court cost in no specific order.
  • ServeSafe Certification- youth are able to participate in tutoring taught by Chef Corp to prepare youth to obtain a ServSafe Certification
  • Counseling & Substance Abuse Services- services include mental health and substance abuse assessments, 12-week substance abuse outpatient group, on-going substance abuse groups, and individual counseling
  • Aggression Replacement Training- this program will teach youth techniques to control impulsiveness and anger so they can choose more appropriate pro-social behaviors.
  • Transitional Housing- Youth who turn 18 while in the program are eligible for transitional housing through The Lord’s Place, where they will receive wrap around services.

 

Flow Chart:

    

 

 

Reentry Directory: