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Youth in detention program exceed expectations

When the Albany County Juvenile Reporting and Family Center (JRFC) first started on March 1, 2013, administrators at the three collaborating JRFC agencies  – LaSalle School, St. Catherine’s Center for Children, and St. Anne Institute – proposed four key outcomes and goals for participating youth and families. In September, a Performance and Quality Improvement assessment showed that these youth have improved upon their predictions for each of the outcomes.

During one 10-month period, on average, youth between the ages of eight and 17 responded positively to the model LaSalle, St. Catherine’s, and St. Anne’s proposed to the Albany County officials. Ninety-nine percent of all youths have kept court appointments (95 percent was expected), 98 percent were able to remain living in their homes and communities (90 percent was expected), 98 percent had not committed new offenses (80 percent was the goal), and 96 percent of families connected with services in their communities (90 percent was anticipated). Upon closer observation, monthly measurements indicated that there was only one month in one category that the goal was not achieved.

Albany County has been pleased with the results of the JRFC and continues to use the program as an alternative to detention.

The Juvenile Reporting and Family Center is supported by Prevention funds provided by the Albany County Department for Children, Youth and Families, and is a collaboration with sites at LaSalle School, Saint Anne Institute, and Saint Catherine’s Center for Children. The JRFC provides a holistic approach to building and enhancing protective factors for youth and families involved in the Juvenile Justice System while maintaining the youth’s connections to his / her community. It is an effort by the three agencies to work together to serve more youth at risk of formalized detention lowering the cost to Albany County.

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